A dictionary of high and colloquial Malayalim and English/Preface

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A dictionary of high and colloquial Malayalim and English (നിഘണ്ടു)

രചന:ബെഞ്ചമിൻ ബെയ്‌ലി
constructed table of contents

[ 11 ] PREFACE.

In giving the following work to the public the Author might enter into an elaborate
discussion on the subject by way of preface, but he considers it wholly unnecessary to
do this at present. He will therefore confine himself to such brief remarks as he deems
requisite, and such as may prove useful to the reader.

With reference to the work now submitted to the public the Author would, in the first
instance, remark that it is the first of the kind ever published, and he flatters himself that
it will prove of service to those who are desirous of obtaining a tolerably competent
knowledge of the Malayalim language. To the native student also who is anxious to
acquire a knowledge of the English language it will not be without its use.

A work of this kind has long been a great desideratum, and from want of such a work a
European on first arriving in this country labours under very great disadvantages in acquir-
ing a knowledge of the language. This the Author can state from experience. Very
soon after his arrival in the country, upwards of twenty-nine years ago, he commenced
collecting materials in order to supply this desideratum at some future period, should it
please God to spare his life, which He has mercifully done. From that time he continued
gradually to accumulate matter, and it was his intention to have committed it to the press at
a much earlier period, but the attention which he has been imperatively called to pay to
the more important and sacred duties of his ministerial office prevented his carrying his
wishes into effect. Having at length completed the printing of the whole of the Sacred
Scriptures in Malayalim, including a second edition of the New Testament and another
important work or two, he was able, during the last few years, to devote more time to
the following work and to put it to the press. He has bestowed great attention and
labour upon it. Being the first work of the kind ever published it cannot be expect-
ed to be entirely free from defect, but it is hoped no very material errors will be found
in it. Some typographical errors have occurred in carrying it through the press, the prin-
cipal of which will be noticed at the end of the work. There are also some omissions,
the consequence of mere oversight at the time, a few of which have been supplied.

The meanings attached to the purely Malayalim words will be found generally cor-
rect, and more meanings inight have been added to very many words. The high Ma-
layalim terms are chiefly derived from the Sanscrit, and great pains has been taken to
give the renderings in most common use. It will be found that nearly, if not the whole
of the words which occur in the Amarésam or Amara Cosa are given in this work to many
of which other meanings are attached than those generally given by commentators on the
Amarésam. Many other words of Sanscrit origin occur. [ 12 ] A number of Botanical terms have also been introduced, which will prove of use,
and for which the Author is in a great measure indebted to Ainslie's Materia Indica and
one or two other works. He desires to express his obligations to Dr. Wilson, whose San-
scrit Dictionary he has found of special assistance in the composition of this work. Dr.
Rottler's Tamul and English Dictionary has also been consulted, with Campbell's Teloo-
goo and English Dictionary.

To most of the words derived from the Sanscrit, not in common use, Malayalim ren-
derings are given in addition to the English. This plan was not adopted in the com-
mencement, and the first thirty-two pages are printed without them. It was then consi-
dered that the work would be rendered much more valuable by the introduction of those
renderings. There are also meanings of common acceptation given to words of Sanscrit
origin in general use. To these meanings Malayalim terms have also been added. No
pains have been spared to render the work as comprehensive and useful as possible.

The genitive case has generally been given in addition to the nominative, with the
exception of a few instances, in which it has been inadvertently omitted. The perfect
tense and infinitive mood of verbs, have been given as well as the present tense. This
may prove of considerable advantage to the early student.

The object of the Author in the publication of this work has been to render the means
of acquiring a knowledge of the Malayalim language more easy to Europeans and others
than it has hitherto been, and he trusts it will be found that he has, to a great extent at least,
succeeded. There still remains another desideratum to which the attention of the Author
has been drawn, viz. an English and Malayalim Dictionary to accompany the present work.
He has prepared sufficient materials to commence printing such a work, and should his
life be spared, he hopes to publish it, provided he meet with sufficient encouragement to
do so. A small vocabulary too is much required.

The Author desires to record his very grateful acknowledgements to General Cullen,
Resident of Travancore and Cochin for the deep and special interest he has taken in the
work, for so warmly patronizing and recommending it to the Government of Fort St.
George, and for so cheerfully aiding him in carrying it through the press and procuring
subscribers to it.


July 1846.