Among the ancient languages of India, Sanskrit and Tamil are more ancient others.While Tamil is conventionally placed at 3000 back, Sanskrit @ 5000 BC,that is Rig Veda.Here Convention means ‘Western Scholars and Indian Secular/ Left Historians’.India has the dubious honour of providing to lexicon terms like Left,Secular Historians!
Based on recent excavations in Poompuhar,Tamil Nadu,the date of Tamil is pushed back to atleast 12,000 years ago.Sanskrit goes back further. Important factor to note is that Tamil and Sanskrit run parallel and each quote the other.An ancient Tamil site in Chennai,Tamil Nadu is about a million years old and I had written on this.Such an ancient language Tamil quotes Sanskrit and in turn Tamil quotes Sanskrit again! So, it is futile to determine their dates as it goes back to lo…….ng back,which defies comprehension.When one reads History of world, Tamil and Sanatan dharma were most ancient and they have influenced world civilizations in some form or other.And all world languages trace their origins to either Tamil or Sanskrit.
Dravidian Language Family presence among Tribes, India
History of Tamil is mind-boggling.Atlantis ,Mayan civilization,apart from others speak of Tamil or MU civilization .And the land of Tamils , unfortunately named after an animal as Lemuria,is at least 230 Millions years old and Himalayas was not formed then.
So it is not surprising to know that Tamil has over 80 Variations being spoken by Tribes in the world.One can find Tamil words in Cameroon!
In the historical past Proto-Dravidian was spoken throughout India. When the Turanians and the Aryans came to India through the Khyber and the Bolan Passes respectively, and mingled with the local population of the North, the North Indian languages of Proto-Dravidian origin changed to a great extent. As a consequence Praakrit and Paali emerged as the languages of the masses in the northern part of India. Despite the commingling of local and foreign ethnic elements, a section of Proto-Dravidians maintained their ethnic and cultural identity in some isolated areas, spoke corrupt forms of Proto-Dravidian languages and these have survived, to this day, as living examples of ancient Dravidian languages. Languages such as Kolami, Parji, Naiki, Gondi, Ku, Kuvi, Konda, Malta, Oroan, Gadba, Khurukh, and Brahui are examples of Dravidian languages prevalent in the North. Today Proto-Dravidian speakers are increasingly mingling with other linguistic groups and learning their languages. Therefore, their numerical strength is on the decline. People living in the Rajmahal mountains in Bengal and in the areas adjacent to Chota Nagpur are good examples of the intermingling. A section of people living in Baluchistan speak Brahui, which has many linguistic features similar to the Dravidian languages spoken in South India. Scholars are surprised today to note many linguistic similarities between Tamil and Brahui, especially in numerals, personal pronouns, syntax and in other linguistic features. The Indian Census report of 1911 classified Brahui as a language belonging to the Dravidian family. It was then spoken by about 170, 000 people, although this number over the years dwindled to a couple of thousands. Whatever be their numerical strength now, they are proof of the fact that the Dravidians in some age of the historical past were spread in the region between Baluchistan and Bengal and spoke the Proto-Dravidian idiom.
North Indian Languages
Since the Dravidians lived throughout the Indian subcontinent at some historical past, certain syntactical affinities are noticeable even today between the South and a large number of North Indian languages. […]
The term Dravidian, which refers to the language of South India, is of a later origin. Originally it was derived from the word tamil /tamiz> . This word in course of time changed into dravida after undergoing a series of changes like tamiza, tramiza, tramiTa, trapida and travida. At one time the languages spoken in the regions of Karnataka, Kongu and Malabar were respectively known as Karunaattut-tamil, Tulunattut-tamil and Malainattut-tamil. Today however, these regional languages are classified under the blanket term “Dravidian family of languages”.https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16288
Source: Tamil Cultural Assocation – Tamil Language
Address : http://www.tamilculturewaterloo.org/tamillanguage.htm
Date Visited: Sat Nov 22 2014 12:
Of the Dravidian languages, Tamil has the greatest geographical extension and the richest and most ancient literature, which is paralleled in India only by that of Sanskrit. Its phonological and grammatical systems correspond in many points to the ancestral parent language, called Proto-Dravidian.
Nothing definite is known about the origin of the Dravidian family. There are vague indigenous traditions about an ancient migration from the south, from a submerged continent in what is now the Indian Ocean. According to some scholars, Dravidian languages are indigenous to India. In recent years, a hypothesis has been gaining ground that posits a movement of Dravidian speakers from the northwest to the south and east of the Indian Peninsula, a movement originating possibly from as far away as Central Asia. Another theory connects the Dravidian speakers with the peoples of the Indus Valley civilization. The Dravidian languages have remained an isolated family to the present day and have defied all of the attempts to show a connection with the Indo-European tongues, Mitanni, Basque, Sumerian, or Korean. The most promising and plausible hypothesis is that of a linguistic relationship with the Uralic (Hungarian, Finnish) and Altaic (Turkish, Mongol) language groups.
As an independent family, the Dravidian languages were first recognized in 1816 by Francis W. Ellis, a British civil servant. The actual term Dravidian was first employed by Robert A. Caldwell, who introduced the Sanskrit word dravida (which, in a 7th-century text, obviously meant Tamil) into his epoch-making A Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian or South Indian Family of Languages (1856).
Tamil is spoken by 39,400,000 people (1981 est.) in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, by another 2,697,000 in Sri Lanka (Ceylon), by smaller numbers of people in Burma, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Vietnam (about 1,400,000), in East and South Africa (almost 250,000), and by still smaller numbers in Guyana and on the islands of Fiji, Mauritius, Réunion, Madagascar, Trinidad, and Martinique. The earliest literary monuments of the language belong roughly to the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC. There exist a number of local dialects, the major dialect regions being the northern and eastern areas combined, the western area, the southern area (split into at least four major dialects of Madurai, Tirunelveli, Nanjiland, and Ramnad), and Sri Lanka (Ceylon). Correlated with the social position of the speaker are a number of speech forms; a major division occurs between the Brahmin and the non-Brahmin varieties. In addition, there is a sharp dichotomy between the formal language and informal speech.
Malayalam, which is closely related to Tamil, is spoken in the Indian state of Kerala by some 21,700,000 people. Possessing an independent written script, it also has a rich modern literature. There are at least three main regional dialects (North, Central, South) of Malayalam and a number of communal dialects.
http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~haroldfs/sars238/encybrit.htmlthe Nilgiris and adjacent regions, several minor tribes speak the following languages: Kota (1,400), Toda (1,145), Badaga (128,500), Irula (Irula) (6,176). The less well-known languages of a number of other tribes may yet be established as independent members of the Dravidian family (e.g., Kurumba, Paniya) http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~haroldfs/sars238/encybrit.html