Know the Etymology: 220
Place Name of the Day: Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Kivulpana, Puspane

கிவுல்பன, புஸ்பனெ
Kivulpana, Puspane


The brackish water
The water found with moss, fungus or mildew

Kivul(adjective) Brackish when used in the context of water (Sinhala); Cava値u, Savu値u, Sava値u: Brackishness (Kannada, DED 2386); Cava値oo, Cava値u: Brackish (Tulu, DED 2386); Chavar: Brackishness (Tamil, DED 2386); Astringent (Malayalam, DED 2386); Chavadu: Fuller痴 earth, alkaline soil (Tamil, DED 2386)
Pus (noun) Fungus forming on things in a damp place, mildew, mould i.e., substance that grows on rotten food; (adjective) blank, barren (Sinhala); Paasi: Green stuff on stagnant pools, moss, mouldiness (Tamil, with cognates in several Dravidian languages, DED 3821); Poognchu, Poogncha地am, Poogncha値am: Mould, mildew, cobweb, fungus on things in a damp place (Tamil, DED 4357); Poo (in verb combinations such as Pooththu poathal): To become mouldy; Poognchai: Cobweb; Poognchi: Dust (Tamil, DED 4357); Pooppu: Mould (Malayalam); Boosi, Boosu, Booju, Booje: Mould, mildew, mustiness (Kannada, DED 4357, further cognates are found in Tulu, Telugu, Parji, Kui and Kuwi)
Pana Also Pane: Water, in the context of place names (Sinhala); Paa: Root word associated with drinking, having derivatives Paana, Paaneeya etc., associated with drink (Sanskrit, Prakrits, Sinhala); Pani: (verb) to be bedewed, flow out, rain incessantly; (noun) Dew, rain, mist (Tamil, cognates are found in Malayalam, Kuruba, Kota, Toda, Kannada, Kodagu, Tulu, Telugu, Kolami, Naikri, Parji, Gadba, Gondi, Konda, Pengo, Manda, Kui, Kuwi, Kurux and Maltese, DED 4035); Punal: Water, flood, river (Tamil, DED 4338); Water, river (Malayalam, DED 4338); Ponal: Stream, river (Kannada, DED 4338); Pa地地ai: Pond (Tamil)

Pana and Pane, which are common components found in the Sinhala place names, do not have any relevant meaning on their own. But a close perusal of the context in which the components are used in a large number of place names would show that they invariably stand for a source of water.

Related words in Sanskrit, Prakrits and Sinhala are Paana and Paaneeya from the root Paa, associated with drinking. The words usually mean a drink, but also come to stand for water as in the word Paani in many of the Indo-Aryan languages. The Tamil word Pani and its Dravidian cognates are usually associated with dew, rain and mist, and the function of coming out with water (DED 4035).

However, a Dravidian cognate meaning water associated with a source such as a pond, river etc., and has direct relevance to the Sinhala place name components Pana and Pane, is the Tamil/ Malayalam word Punal (DED 4338). In Kannada, the cognate is Ponal.

Another related word in Tamil is Pa地地ai, which means a pond. For instance, the place name Va地地aar-pa地地ai in Jaffna means the pond used by washers of clothes.

* * *

Note the following usage examples from ancient Tamil literature:

Punal as water of a stream falling from the hill:

撤eytha kun池aththuizhitharum punalum (Ku池unthokai 200:1-3)

பெய்த குன்றத்துஇழிதரும் புனலும் (குறுந்தொகை 200:1-3)

The stream of water falls from the hill where it rained

Punal as water in a pond:

添aa地ark kadum punal adai karai nedung kayaththu (Ku池unthokai 171:1-2)

யாணர்க் கடும் புனல் அடை கரை நெடுங் கயத்து (குறுந்தொகை 171:1-2)

In the big pond where the speedy new water flows in

Punal as river water and as water meant for play:

適aaviri neeththamnerunal aadinai punalea (Akanaanoo池u 6: 6 -12)

காவிரி நீத்தம்நெருநல் ஆடினை புனலே (அகநானூறு 6: 6 -12)

In the flow of the river Kaaviri you played in the water yesterday

Pa地地ai meaning a pond:

撤u池agn chi池aip pozhilum pi池angku neerp pa地地aiyum (Chilappathikaaram 14:1)

புறஞ் சிறைப் பொழிலும் பிறங்கு நீர்ப் பண்ணையும் (சிலப்பதிகாரம் 14:1)

The enclosed grove and the pond brimming with water

Pa地地ai meaning a pond or reservoir:

鄭lanthai pa地地ai.vaavi (Thivaakaram Nika地du 5:61)

அலந்தை பண்ணை.வாவி (திவாகரம் நிகண்டு 5:61)

Alanthai, Pa地地ai etc., mean Vaavi (tank or reservoir)

* * *

Kivul as an adjective in Sinhala is a general term for all kinds of salts and minerals. The word could also be used for provisions that are deficient in salt. But when used in the context of water it means brackish, whether the brackishness is due to salinity, calcium content or due to the presence of any other mineral. The Sinhala place names show that the word is even used in the contexts of saline, alkaline or calcic landscapes.

The Dravidian cognate for the word found in Tamil and Malayalam is Chavar that means brackishness in Tamil and astringent in Malayalam.

Another related cognate in Tamil, Chavadu, means the Fuller痴 Earth that was used in laundering clothes in old times. (See column on Vazhalaay). The modern phrase Chavark-kaaram or Chavuk-kaaram for soap has come from the alkaline content of it.

Among the Dravidian parallels, the closest cognate for the Sinhala term Kivul seems to be the word Savu値u found in Kannada, which also means brackishness (DED 2386).

See the table for the other cognates and note the K > CH/ S interchange as well as the L > R and L > D interchanges.

The following examples are from old Tamil literature for the usage of the word Chavar:

Chavar as uncultivable land:

適a'larum Chavarum vi'laiyaa nilamea (Pingkala Nika地du 4:131)

களரும் சவரும் விளையா நிலமே (பிங்கல நிகண்டு 4:131)

Ka値ar and Chavar are uncultivable lands

Chavar figuratively meaning bitterness in feeling:

鼎havarudaiya manai vaazhkkai (Neelakeasi 4:13)

சவருடைய மனை வாழ்க்கை (நீலகேசி 4:13)

The family life of bitterness

* * *

The component Pus found in the place name Pus-pane, means fungus, mildew or mould in Sinhala. In the context of this place name that has the suffix meaning a source of water, Pus must be meaning moss or any other fungus growth on the water. Other shades of meaning for the word in Sinhala, such as blank, barren etc., may also bring in an interpretation that it is a dried-up pond. (See table)

Cognates for the word Pus could be seen in two sets of words in Dravidian: Paasi in Tamil, meaning moss, come from the root-word Pach related to green (DED 3821).

But there is another set of Dravidian cognates coming from the root-word Poo, related to fungus listed under DED 4357, which is found to be almost identical to all the shades of the meaning given to the Sinhala word Pus. Once again the Kannada terms Boosi and Boosu, meaning mildew, mustiness and mould are closer to Sinhala than the other cognates.

However, the root-verb Poo for fungus etc growing on something damp is found only in Tamil and Malayalam usages.

Poognchu, Poogncha地am, Poognchai are some of the derivatives in Tamil, meaning fungus, mildew, mould and cobweb. Derivatives such as Poognchai and Poognchaan also mean weakness, fragility and emaciation in Tamil, like the second set of meanings for the Sinhala word Pus, such as barren, blank etc.

Example from Changkam Tamil literature for the use of the root verb Poo for mushroom, fungus etc growing on something:

鄭adu nani ma池antha koadu uyar aduppin aampi pooppa (Pu池anaanoo池u 164: 1-2)

ஆடு நனி மறந்த கோடு உயர் அடுப்பின் ஆம்பி பூப்ப (புறநானூறு 164: 1-2)

Mushroom was growing on the high-topped hearth that had long forgotten cooking

* * *

Kivul-pana is a village in Rambukkana division of Kegalle district.

Pus-pane is a village in the Bulathkohupitiya division of Kegalle district

* * *

Some related place names:


Kivul-deniya: The alkaline land; Warakapola division, Kegalle district

Kivul-ara: The brackish stream; Thanamalvila division, Moneragala district

Kivule-yaya: The brackish expanse; Siyambalanduwa division, Moneragala district

Kivule-watta: The grove in the brackish area; Damana division, Ampaa池ai district

Kivule-gama: The village in the brackish land or the village in a mineral area; Nikawerattiya division, Kurunegala district; Damana division, Ampaa池ai district;

Kivul-galla: The mineral hill or hillock; Narammala division, Kunegala district

Kivule-gedara: The house premises in the brackish area or mineral area; Narammala division, Kurunegala district; Kandaketiya division, Badulla district

Kivule-wadiya: The camp at the brackish area or mineral area; Laggala-Pallegama division, Matale district

Kivula-kadawala: The brackish area to pass through; Gomarankadawala division, Trincomalee district

Kivule-kada: The brackish area to pass through; Horowpothana division, Anuradhapura district

Kivula: The brackish area; Ambalantota division, Hambantota district; Mahakumbukkadawala division, Puththa値am district

Meegaha-kivula: The brackish area in the locality of a Mee tree; Meegahakivula division, Badulla district

* * *


Piti-pana: The waters in the high ground plains; Homagama division, Colombo district; Negombo division, Gampaha district

Wewel-panawa: The waters in the locality of cane creepers; Padukka division, Colombo. Weaw詬a: Cane or common rattan creeper, Calamus roxburghii (Sinhala); Veay: (verb) to thatch; (noun) bamboo; Veayal: short-sized bamboo (Tamil, DED 5541); Veazham: reed, bamboo (Tamil, Malayalam, DED 5541); W詬, W詬a: creeper (Sinhala); Va値値i: creeper (Tamil, with cognates in Malayalam, Kannada, Tulu and Telugu, DED 5316); Vallee: creeper (Sanskrit, Turner, CDIAL, 11429)

De-panama: The twin waters; Maharagama division, Colombo district

Rassa-pana: The tasty water; Divulapitiya division, Gampaha district

Ura-pana: Uraa-pana: The water of boars; Divulapitiya division, Gampaha district. Uraa: boar (Sinhala); Soogara: boar (Sanskrit, Prakrits); Also probably, the water of snakes. Ura: snake (Sinhala); Oor: (verb) to creep, crawl as a snake (Tamil, DED 749); Ooran: Snake (Malayalam, DED 749); Urakam, Uravam, Urakan: Snake (Tamil, Chilappathikaaram, 12:59, Theavaaram 1:10:5, Periyaazhvaar, Jeeva 82); Ara, Aravu, Aravam: Snake (Tamil, DED 2359, Natti地ai 325: 3-4), Kurunthokai 119:1, Pu池anaanoo池u 260: 20-22)

Nil-pana-goda: The bank of blue waters or the village of blue waters; Minuwangoda division, Gampaha district

Panan-wala: The watery forest; Dombe division, Gampaha district

Kalu-pana: The dark waters; Horana division, Kalutara district

Namba-pana: Naamba-pana: The waters for young bulls; Ingiriya division, Kalutara district. Naamba: young bull, half-grown animal (Sinhala); Naampan: young bull (Eezham Tamil); Nampi: a younger person, junior, a pet word used for a younger person (Tamil, DED 3085)

Itta-pana: The waters in the locality of date palms (Walallawita division, Kalutara district

Palee-pana: The waters of the washers serving lower castes; Poojapitiya division, Kandy district. Palee: The caste that washes cloths of the lower castes (Sinhala); Paa値i: rag or shred (Malayalam, Tulu, DED 4115); clothe of workers (Tamil, 撤aa値i pa地ith-thoosu, Pingkalam Lexicon 6:177)

Naa-pana: The waters in the locality of Naa trees; Pathadumbara division, Kandy district

Wata-pana: The round water (source); Medadumbara division, Kandy district

Mal-pana: The water of flowers; Kundasale division, Kandy district

Pana-bokka: The sink land with water, the waterhole or the watery depression; Udanuwara division, Kandy district

Yata-pana: The waters at the bottom; Ganga Ihala Korale division, Kandy district

Kavudu-pana: The water of crows; Yatinuwara division, Kandy district

He-pana: The waters having a simple bridge; Udunuwara division, Kandy district. Hea: bridge; Hea-dandu: foot bridge over a brook or mountain stream, generally a single tree (Sinhala); Setu: bridge (Sanskrit)

Naya-pana: The water of cobra snakes; Kothmale division, Nuwara Eliya district

Panan-gammana: The watery hamlet; or the hamlet at the waters; Kothmale division, Kandy district

Kuru-pana-wela: The small watery paddy fields; Walapane division, Nuwara Eliya district

Panan-gala: The watery hill or the hill of a water source; Thawalama division, Galle district

Weera-pana: The waters in the locality of Weera trees; Thawalama division, Galle district

Rana-pana-deniya: The land of golden waters; Hikkaduwa division, Galle district

Thun-hiri-pana: The three-lined water (course or falls); Bope-paddala division, Galle district. Hiri: line or stroke (Sinhala); piri: to divide; Pirivu, Pirippu, Pirichal: division, divide (Tamil, DED 4176); Hiri: equivalent cognate in Kannada (DED 4176)

Kirilli-pana: The waters of female (egg-laying) birds; Pasgoda division, Matara district. Kirilla, Kirilli: Feminine form of Kurulla, meaning bird in general (Sinhala); Kuruvi, Kuree-i: small bird (Tamil, DED 1793)

Kuda-pana: The small water (source); Mulatiyana division, Matara district

Una-pana: The waters in the locality of bamboo; Padiyathalawa division, Ampaa池ai district; Uva-Paranagama division, Badulla district. Una, U地a: bamboo (Sinhala); Ka地, Ka地u: joint of a bamboo, cane, reed etc (Tamil, with cognates in several Dravidian languages, DED 1160); Ka地ai: bamboo (Malayalam, DED 1166)

Ridee-pana: The silvery waters; Soranathota division, Badulla district

Bambara-pana: The waters of honeybees or beehives; Uva-Paranagama division, Badulla district. Bambara: large black honeybee, beehive, wasp (Sinhala); Pampa: (verb) to hum/ sound or swarm like bees, dragonfly, beetle etc; Pampu, Pampum: (adverb) sounding like bees etc; Pampai: a kind of drum that sounds like bees etc; Pamaram: bee, beetle (Tamil, also see DED 3932)

Keli-pana-wela: The paddy fields in the locality of a water source for play; Hildummulla division, Badulla district. Keli: play, sport, amusement, pleasure (Sinhala); Ka値i: play, game (Malayalam, Kannada, DED 1374); from Ka値 > Ka値i > Ka値ippu > Ka値i-aaddam > Kea値ikkai: toddy > intoxication > delight > entertainment (Tamil, DED 1374)

Netiya-pana: The waters falling from the brow of a hill or the waters at a joint, corner or end; Rambukkana division, Kegalle district. Nettiya: forehead, ends or tips of the fingers, corner, point, end (Sinhala); Neththi: forehead, front, top, summit (Tamil, DED 3759); Neddi: cracking of the finger joints (Tamil, DED 2936); Netti: sound produced by pulling knuckles (Kannada, Tulu, DED 2936); Netika: a knuckle, cracking the knuckles (Telugu, DED 2936)

Sudu-pana-wela: The paddy fields of white water source; Wellawaya division, Moneragala district

Heenati-pana: The waters for growing Heenati paddy; Mawanella division, Kegalle district; Heenati: A kind of small-grained paddy (Sinhala); Cheenaddi: The same small-grained paddy (Eezham Tamil)

Keera-pana: 1. The water of edible greens, 2. The splinter waters, 3. The waters of (frequented by) parrots; Aranayake division, Kegalle district. Keera: Splinter, parrot (Sinhala); Keerai: edible greens such as spinach, pot-herbs, vegetables (Tamil, with cognates in Malayalam, Tiyya, Kota, Toda, Kannada and Telugu, DED 1617); Kee池u: (verb) to slit, slice, cut etc; (noun) Cut, slice, piece (Tamil, with cognates in Malayalam, Kota, Toda, Kannada, Kodagu, Tulu, Telugu and Gondi, DED 1624); Kizhi, Kee値: (verb) to tear, make into pieces (Tamil, DED 1581, 1622, note the ZH/ 銑 > R interchanges); Ki値i, Ki値値ai, Keeram: parrot (Tamil, with cognates in Malayalam, Kota, Toda, Kannada, Kodagu, Tulu, Telugu and Parji, DED 1584, note the 銑 > R interchange with Sinhala as well as within Tamil usages)

Lahu-pana: The small waters; Galigamuwa division, Kegalle district

Mara-pana: The waters of death; Pelmadulla division, Ratnapura district

Pana-mura: The encirclement of water; Embilipitiya division, Ratnapura district.

* * *


Wala-pane: The forest waters; Walapane division, Nuwara Eliya district

Kirula-pone: Probably from Kirilla-pana: The waters in the locality of Kirilla trees, Sonneratia acida, the Cork Tree or the waters of female birds; Thimbirigasyaya division, Colombo district. See Kirilli-pana.

Kuku値-pane: The waters of fowls; Warakapola division, Kegalle district

Keera-pane: 1. The water of edible greens, 2. The splinter waters, 3. The waters of (frequented by) parrots; Udapalatta division Kandy district. See Keera-pana for etymology

Kara-pane: The waters of Kara shrub, Canthium parviflorum; Mawanella division, Kegalle district

Kem-pane: The waters of the plant Bryonia grandis; Kolonna division, Ratnapura district

* * *

Punal (Tamil/ Malayalam):

Punaloor: Punal+oor: The village of water sources; Kollam district, Kerala

First published: Tuesday, 31 July 2012, 01:21

Previous columns:


Latest 15 Reports
Find this article at: