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Malayalam Related Topics

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chill~ forms should be treated as anuswaram

A. R. Raja Raja Varma states in his Keralapanineeyam that "anuswaram is the chill~ of ma". Thus we can say that Malayalam has got more than one anuswarams. There is anuswaram for ma; there is anuswaram for na, Na, la etc. This is essentially same as saying Malayalam got some number of 'chillus' which includes ma, na, la etc.

If you look closely the phonetic rules are also same for anuswaram maand other chills. Most importantly the half stop property, if itoccurs in the middle of a word. eg:
സംയുക്തം സാമ്യം
കല്‍വിളക്ക്‌ വില്വാദ്രി
കണ്‍വട്ടം കണ്വന്‍

Essentially this means Unicode should do either of:

1. include separate character locations for existing chillus

- solves the confusion of ല്‍

- addresses other chillu representation issues

2. allow anuswaram to be encoded as 'ma' + Virama + ZWJ.

- does not change existing encoding for chillus

- does not address other chillu representation issues

Cibu, you are correct, if we choose option 2. usage of anuswaram in Malayalam will be different from other Indian languages. And also we will have more characters to type as many Malayalam words are ending with anuswaram. So option 1 is better.

At present "il" is chill of "la" in Unicode. I remember once in Malayalam grammar class I was thought it is a wrong usage and "il" really is chill of "tha" ie, താത്പ്പര്യം = (current) താല്പ്പര്യം. Option 1 removes this ambiguity.

Another issue in Unicode is for "ന", first and second "ന" of നനഞ്ഞു sounds different. So in future when there is Malayalam character reader(text to sound) there is going to be problem. Actually in very old Malayalam there was two different "ന" but later removed due to less difference between them. Somebody need to rise this issues in Unicode form.

~ Bijee
Option 1 will also give chill the status of letter. And it is consistent to position chill in Malayalam. Always chills where considered as letters (I mean half letters), hence name ചില്ലക്ഷരം, and it is always there in അക്ഷരമാല (at the bottom line).

When we do letter count in Malayalam, we say xx അക്ഷരം and yy chill.
But see case of ചന്ദ്രക്കല and pulli, we dont do that, as we dont consider them in അക്ഷരമാല as it is not an അക്ഷരം.

We can also see a discussion about chill towards the ending of O Chandhu Menon's "Indhu Lekha Novel", so discussion about chill is not something started now with Unicode or computerization. ~Bijee
>> "anuswaram is the chill~ of ma"
This is also true when you check the way Tamil do anuswaram and chill. In Tamil they use ம் (the same way they do chill for other letters) for anuswaram, like the one in நடனம் - നടനമ് (നടനം).
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