Dialect Variation

Topics: Sri Lanka, Tamil language, Tamil Nadu Pages: 3 (855 words) Published: November 5, 2012
Dialect Variation in Tamil

Tamil is one of the ancient languages of the world with records inthe language dating back over two millennia. Its origins are notprecisely known, but it developed and flourished in India as a language with a rich literature. With an estimated 30,000inscriptions, Tamil has the largest number of inscriptions in South Asia. Tamil belongs to the southern branch of the Dravidian languages,a family of around twenty-six languages native to the Indian subcontinent. It is sometimes classified as being part of a Tamil language family, which alongside Tamil proper, also includes thelanguages of about 35 ethno-linguistic groups such as the Irula,and Yerukula languages . The closest major relative of Tamil is Malayalam. Until about theninth century, Tamil and Malayalam were dialects of one language,called "Tamil" by the speakers of both. Although many of the differences between Tamil and Malayalam evidence a pre historic split between eastern and western dialects, the process ofseparation of the two into distinct languages was not completeduntil sometime in the 13th or 14th century.

Tamil is the first language of the majority of the people residing in Tamil Nadu in India and Northern Province, Eastern Province, Sri Lanka. The language is also spoken among small minority groups in other states of India which include Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Maharashtra and in certain regions of Sri Lanka such as Colombo and the hill country. Previously Tamil had a wider distribution in India than its current state. Tamil or dialects of it were used widely in the state of Kerala as the major language of administration, literature and common usage until the 12th century CE. Tamil was also used widely in inscriptions found in southern Andhra Pradesh districts of Chittoor and Nellore until the 12th century AD.

VARIOUS TAMIL DIALECTS
1.Nellai Tamil, also known as Tirunelveli Tamil, is one of the dialects of Tamil which is spoken in the districts...
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