You are on page 1of 17

AGRAHARAMS: THE ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF A UNIQUE HOUSING PATTERN IN KERALA

Sharat Sunder R

CONTENTS
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. INTRODUCTION........................................................................................................................... 3 BRAHMIN MIGRATION TO KERALA DURING 15TH CENTURY ............................... 4 THE SETTLEMENT PATTERN ................................................................................................ 5 THE TRADITIONAL KERALA HOMESTEAD AND THE AGRAHARAMS ............. 6 THE PLANNING ACCORDING TO VASTUPURUSHAMANDALA .......................... 11 REFLECTING SOCIAL POSITION IN THE BUILT FABRIC........................................ 13 CONCLUSION .............................................................................................................................. 15 REFERENCES: .............................................................................................................................. 17

AGRAHARAMS: THE ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF A UNIQUE HOUSING PATTERN IN KERALA

1. INTRODUCTION

The agraharams1 of Kerala is the standing vestiges of the history of a group of people who had migrated to this land and made it their abode. The history of the Brahmin migration to Kerala are intertwined with a lot of myths and legends, that one finds it hard to separate the truth from them. According to popular belief and oral traditions, the ancestors of the Brahmins of south India had migrated from northern India to the southern parts of the subcontinent in the course of Aryan Invasion.2 The earliest records of Brahmins and their settlements in south India finds mention in Perump uppa ai3, a Sangam Age work dated to 3rd century AD called which describes the agraharams as follows: The houses had in front of them, a shed with short legs to which were tied fat calves; the houses were washed with cow dung and had idols (inside them). Domestic fowl and dogs did not approach them. It was the village of the guardians of the Veda who teach its sounds to the parrots with the bent mouth. If you (bard) reach (the place), fair faced bangled ladies who are as chaste as (Arundhathi) the little star which shines in the north of the bright, broad sky, will after sunset feed you on the well-cooked rice named after the bird (explained by the commentator as the rice called irasanam) along with slices of citron boiled in butter taken, from the buttermilk derived from red cows and scented with the leaves of the karuvembu, and mixed with pepper-powder, and the sweet-smelling tender fruit plucked from the tall mango tree and pickled

Agraharams: The name originates from the fact that the agraharams have rows of houses on either side of the road and the temple to the village god at the centre, thus resembling a garland around the temple. According to the traditional Hindu practice of architecture and town-planning, an agraharam is held to be two rows of houses running north-south on either side of a road at one end of which would be a temple to Shiva and at the other end, a temple to Vishnu.

2 The Vadakalai Iyengars of South India are believed to be an Indo-Aryan people who once migrated from North India.( "History of Madras by James Talboys Wheeler" )In a genetic study in Andhra Pradesh all individuals examined among Vadakalai Iyengars showed a high similarity of rhesus(d) gene frequency with the people of Faislabad in the Punjab province of Pakistan. All the individuals examined among Vadakalai Iyengars showed Rhesus(D) positive with a high frequency of the D allele while the other castes from Andhra showed a low frequency of the D allele ( Hameed, Amjad; Hussain, Wajahat; (2002). "Prevalance of Phenotypes and Genes of ABO and Rhesus (Rh) Blood Groups in Faisalabad, Pakistan". Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences (Asian Network for Scientific Information)). 3

P. T. Srinivasa Iyengar (1929). History of the Tamils from the Earliest Times to 600 A. D.; pp. 388 389.
3

The Brahmin settlers of south India had migrated to various parts of the subcontinent and made their settlements around temples. As a community which handled the Vedas and religious texts, the Brahmins wielded power and influence in the social hierarchy. As the priestly class they received royal patronage and respect from the rulers and all the other communities. Wherever they went, the Brahmins made their settlements around temples, around which their everyday life revolved.
2. BRAHMIN MIGRATION TO KERALA DURING 15TH CENTURY

The Brahmins in Kerala can be broadly classified into two groups

the Namboothiri

Brahmins and the Tamil and Tulu Brahmins. The Namboothiri Brahmins claim themselves to be the true Malayala Brahmins of Kerala, who were the descendant of the families brought to Kerala by Parasurama, the mythical creator of Kerala. However, the stories of the origin of many of the prominent Namboothiri families have roots in Tamilakam. The Tamil and Tulu Brahmins who had migrated to various parts of Kerala at different time periods were termed as agraharams. The major Brahmin migrations into Kerala took place from the early Sangam age and extended till 1600 A.D. The last phase of large scale Brahmin migrations were catalyzed by the fall of the Vijayanagara dynasty of the Deccan, exposing the independent, provinces of the South to the invading Muslims from the North. The golden reign of the revered king of Vijayanagara, Deva Raya II, had ended in 1450. Vijayanagara, the Hindu kingdom, geographically shielded the small, weak districts of Tami Nadu from the Muslim invaders of the North. However, Vijayanagara of the late 15th and early 16th century, at the time of the Tamil Brahmin migration, was crumbling, creating widespread fear in the weak, scattered, former Pandya and Pallava kingdoms of the South. The kingdom of Vijayanagara was all that lay between the vulnerable southern kingdoms and the invading Muslims from the north. With the support of the Gajapathi King of Orissa, the Bahmini Sultanate of Delhi continued to attack the Northern frontier of the Vijayanagara kingdom. Therefore, the fall of Vijayanagara also proves to be another important historical event that could have caused turmoil in the southern kingdoms, Paradesi Brahmins by the indigenous communities. The migrants brought with them the new style of housing termed as

triggering the Tamil Brahmin migration to safer abodes. 4 This was the time when the agraharam housing patterns were established in various parts of south India.
3. THE SETTLEMENT PATTERN

The planning of the agraharams followed a grid iron or concentric ring patterns, with the temple forming the main focus. The row of houses is either single or double storied, with the traditional pitched roof form striking a significant profile against the sky. The streets were narrow and formed an integral extension of the living space . The linear settlement pattern culminated at a temple or was arranged around the temple in various concentric rings, as seen in the great south Indian temple towns. Water bodies were always seen it the vicinity of these settlements as the Vedic life recommended both spiritual and physical purity. The row houses sharing a common wall had a long verandah running along the front portion, supported by stone and wooden pillars. This unique architectural style finds itself alienated from the vernacular architecture practices and traditions of the Kerala. However, this architectural style embeds within the true history of this community, their lifestyle, customs and traditions. The evolution of this particular architectural typology may also speak about the social position of the Brahmin community. Even though these migrant Brahmins wielded power in the caste ridden society, they were always a minority when compared to the local indigenous population. Moreover, when they moved into a new place and made their settlements, there was always a tendency amongst the members of the communities to settle together to ensure safety. Another reason behind this was that in most cases the early migrants to a particular place may be the members of a same family, and thus when they settle down in an alien land, they automatically evolved into a close knit community whose principles were based on strict religious norms. The settlements were often made and donated to these families by the rulers. The row housing pattern reflecting the lifestyle of the Brahmin community was unknown to the south Indian agrarian society. The indigenous communities had farmlands in close proximity to their living spaces and often the individual houses stood apart in the centre of a large plot. The courtyard houses of Kerala, often termed as nalukettu and educate had form and features believed to have evolved through a history of tradition going back
4

Arjun Venkat, Tamil Brahmin migration to Kerala, American School of Bombay, 2006.
5

to the Vedic period (500B. C. -200A. D.). The indigenous Dravidian population of south India who followed Jain and Buddhist religions, incorporated into their thoughts and practices, some of the Vedic principles they adopted through the interaction with the Brahmins. Therefore, both in the basic planning of both traditional vernacular architecture of south India and in the agraharams one may come across some similarities. Yet there have been regional variations in the local vernacular architecture, governed by factors like climate and availability of building materials.
4. THE TRADITIONAL KERALA HOMESTEAD AND THE AGRAHARAMS COMPARISON A

The traditional homestead in Kerala was the tharavadu , a complex built unit comprising of many sections with specific usages. The basic units of these houses were square or rectangular structures where four blocks are joined together with a central courtyard open to the sky. The four halls on the sides are named vadakkini (northern block), padinjattini (western block), kizhakkini (eastern block) and thekkini (southern block). The architecture was especially catered to large families of the traditional tharavadu, to live under one roof and enjoy the commonly owned facilities of the marumakkathayam5 homestead. Based on the spatial arrangement of the rooms and the number of courtyards, this vernacular typology is further classified into many different groups. Traditionally nalukettu has one courtyard with four blocks/halls constructed around it in cardinal directions. However some nalukettus have two courtyards, which are known as Ettukettu (eight Blocked structure) as they have altogether eight blocks in cardinal directions. Some superstructures have four courtyards, which then are known as patinarukettu (sixteen blocked structure). While nalukettus and ettukettus are more common, pathinarukettu are extremely rare, due to its enormous size. Likewise nalukettus can be differentiated based on their height and number of floors. Most of the nalukettus in South Kerala are single storied and mostly made with wood completely. Whereas nalukettus in North Kerala are two storied or sometimes even three storied and have laterite and clay mixture as walls. In North Kerala, most of the granaries are located outside the main house, whereas in Travancore side, it will be normally attached to the Kitchen area and mostly built underground.

Marumakkathayam

matrilineal system of inheritance.


6

A traditional Kerala house has the following components: The padippura - It is a structure containing a door forming part of Compound wall for the house with a tiled roof on top. It is the formal gateway to the compound with the house. The poomukham - It is the prime portico soon after steps to the house. Traditionally it has a slope tiled roof with pillars supporting roof. Sides are open. The chuttu verandah - From the Poomukham, a verandah to either side in front of the house through the open passage called chuttu verandah. Chuttu verandah will have hanging lights in equal distance hanging from its slope roof. The nadumuttam - Traditionally nadumuttom or central open courtyard is the prime center of the Nalukettu. The rooms are arranged around this courtyard.

Depending upon the social status and economic conditions of the family, the homestead will have further additions like ponds, granaries and cowsheds, all scattered inside a large compound. The houses of the indigenous Brahman community known as the Namboothiries were also similar to this. The Nampoothiri Brahmins established the gramoms in Kerala, which were the forerunners of the later scattered agrarian settlements. The gramoms were villages with a family of the Nampoothiri family occupying the central position. The settlements of all the other caste members were concentrated around it. The caste system followed in south India was another player in the evolution of the hierarchy of the settlement patterns. The observance of tindappad
6

among the upper and lower

castes, the joint family and customs of the Kerala Brahmins which separate them from their counterparts elsewhere, the matriarchal joint family and succession among the castes included in the Varna-jati system, and above all the peculiar forms of the feudal land relations in Kerala; it is evident from all these realities that the formation of the agricultural village system in Kerala took shape in a different situation from that of the south and north,7 this contributed to the unique identity of the village settlements of Kerala. The design and layout of the Brahmin agraharams are in contrast to the traditional architectural style followed in Kerala. As explained before, the settlement pattern followed by the traditional Brahmin settlers were guided by certain parameters like the
Tindappad contact.
7 6

the observance of certain distances between the various castes in order to avoid pollution by

Cherian PJ (State Editor) Essays on Cultural formation of Kerala.


7

social position of the community, their association with the temple and of course, the patronage of the royals. The agraharams now found in Kerala date back to the 15th and 16th century A.D. The religious and political conditions that prevailed in those days also acted as an important factor in defining the agraharam settlements. The agraharams built around the temples were either arranged along the three sides of the main temple (e.g. the agraharams inside the Fort, Thiruvananthapuram); otherwise, the most commonly seen pattern is the concentric circles around the temple (e.g. agraharams of Srirangam). The agraharams were often built on land donated by the royals and often the land was divided amongst the migrant Brahmins based on the social hierarchy existing within their caste group. The highly regarded families, the priests and the scholars acquired the position near the temple and the palace complex; the others occupied the outer fringes. The agraharams were usually followed a linear planning, quite in contrast to the arrangement of rooms around the courtyard we see in the traditional Kerala houses. The planning and architecture of these two housing patterns have evolved over time taking into consideration various parameters like the local climatic conditions, availability of local building materials and the skill employed in the construction. The courtyard houses of Kerala show a direct response to the climatic conditions of the place. In the hot humid climatic conditions of this region, the courtyard ensures easy ventilation. Traditionally the sloping roof of the houses lets in a little sunlight to the interiors of the traditional Kerala houses; this is compensated by the presence of the large courtyard. The courtyard has some religious association too, traditionally in Kerala Vastu, the open courtyard in a Kerala house is considered as the deva sthana the most sacred place assigned to the gods and hence construction are not allowed there. In old houses we can often see the sacred tulsi planted and worshipped in the centre of the courtyard. The agraharams also incorporates a courtyard in its design; however, here its position is not in the deva sthana. The function of the courtyard in an agraharam corresponds to that of the traditional Kerala courtyard, however, here the scale and proportion are in accordance with the design of the agraharam itself. These courtyards were used for religious purposes, the backbone of the life of the Brahmin community. The spatial planning of the agraharams follows a linear pattern with rooms arranged one after the other. The spaces inside have special purposes, and among them privacy of the

occupants is of the least concern. The various components of the agraharam are the following: Puramthinna the long corridor/verandah running in front of the agraharams.

This space also acted as a community gathering place where the men assembled for religious discourse. Akamthinna the small room next to puramthinna, this room incorporates the

konippadi (stairway) leading to the upper storey. Rezhi this is the central room in an agraharam which acts as the living/bed

room, the important religious ceremonies and rituals associated with the Brahmin community are also performed in this place. Thalam it is the space around the courtyard, the homakundam or the place for the

sacrificial fire is located here. Mittam the courtyard is a part of the rezhi itself and often there is no separation

between these two spaces. Adukkala Kuchil this is the kitchen.

these are the rooms located at the extreme end, where the ladies

during their menstruation are housed. Machil Machil is the attic room. The stairway from the akamthinna leads

to the machil. This room is assigned for the use of newly wedded couples. Kottil the independent structure located at the extreme end, it is often

used as a cow shed or as storage space. In the old days the agraharams did not have toilets associated with the house and the system of scavengers lanes thus came into existence. There were narrow lanes running behind the agraharams, through which the scavengers came and collected the night soil from each agraharam.

THE PLAN AND SECTION SHOWING THE SPATIAL PLANNING OF THE AGRAHARAM.

The culture and life that developed within the agraharam settlements were entirely different from those seen in the traditional indigenous settlements. The matriarchal system of family led to the joint family system, where we had the members of a family living under the same roof. The head of the family was the male head, the karanavar and the senior most females of the family. This joint family system brought in a system of group living and sense of sharing amongst the local communities. However, in the case of the agraharams the qualities of living together and sharing each other s space got reflected in their planning of the settlements and it zoomed down into the architecture of their houses. The traditional houses of Kerala often had a private pond associated with it, which was used exclusively by the members of the family. In the case of the agraharam settlements, the linear division of the plots and the houses which covered almost the whole of the plot area did not allow its settlers to have the luxury of a separate pond for each house. The settlers depended upon the temple pond. The sense of sharing the spaces is then best exhibited in the design of the puramthinna; the long connected verandah s running in front of all the agraharams. The puramthinna was an interstitial space which connected the street and the interiors of the house and this was also the place where religious as well as philosophical debates were held. The culture of living together and sharing has also played an important role in the everyday life of the inhabitants of the agraharams. They have bhajana madhoms (prayer halls) which also was a place where the people from the settlement gathered for the festivals and during important occasions. The indigenous agrarian settlements of Kerala did not have such a gathering place, other than the temple. The agraharams were introvert settlements, often open to the members of the particular caste group, however within the introvert settlement there were designed built and open spaces that well catered to the needs of the settlers. The streets within the settlements were narrow and not designed for vehicular transportation. The streets were also a part of the life of the Brahmin communities as many of the important religious functions and marriage feasts were conducted in the streets. In Kerala there is no community which has integrated the streets with their daily life.
10

5. THE PLANNING ACCORDING TO VASTUPURUSHAMANDALA

The selection, orientation and location of the house in traditional Kerala concept were greatly influenced by the concept of vasthupurushamandala, the cosmic diagram and related geometric ways of spatial planning in relation with time and nature based on astrology and mathematical computation, which formed the primary resource of Hindu architecture.8 According to vastu, the site is divided into nine veedhis or paths by concentric squares. The seventh and eighth paths known as devaveedhi and manushyaveedhi are reserved for ancillary structures. The outermost veedhi is the pishachaveedhi, where no construction other than the compound wall and the gateway are permitted. The two innermost paths are dedicated to the gods- the brahmaveedhi and ganeshaveedhi, these are considered as sacred and no construction is permitted over it. This in turn developed into the open courtyard in the traditional Kerala house.

THE TRADITIONAL PLANNING OF A TEMPLE TOWN WITH THE TEMPLE OCCUPYING THE DEVA STANA, THE LAYOUT OF TEMPLE TOWN OF MADURAI.

The vastu planning which was a unique feature of the traditional Kerala houses was not heard of in the planning and design of the agraharams. The linear pattern of agraharams cannot be overlaid on the vasthupurushamandala. However, taking into consideration the planning of a temple town, we can see that the agraharams were constructed in the veedhis
8

Jacob Joseph Koduveliparambil, Construction Practices in Traditional Dwellings of Kerala (Thesis), 1997.
11

which were assigned for human habitation. In a traditional temple town, the temple is the nucleus, around which the settlements are made, i.e., the temple occupies the brahmaveedhi.
CASESTUDIES: Examples for extensive agraharam settlements can be seen in the layout

of the old temple towns of Madurai (FIG 3) and Srirangam. In Madurai the settlement pattern and its hierarchy are rather interesting as we can see that there the Brahmins were not always considered as the most privileged caste groups.

THE TEMPLE TOWN OF SRIRANGAM.

The fortune of the old walled city of Madurai was in the hands of the traders. The Chettiar (Vaisya traders) and the settlers from Sourashtra and the Yadava communities were associated with trade and they enjoyed higher position and status in the social hierarchy. Their social position reflected in the settlement patter, in Madurai, the settlements of the trading communities are seen in proximity to the temple complex. The community of traders who thus lived alongside the Brahmins adopted their mode of row housing and thus the housing of the trading communities in Madurai is similar to the agraharam row housing pattern of the Brahmins.
12

In the more traditional temple town of Srirangam we can still see the remnants of the past glory of the agraharams. Here the Brahmin settlements are seen in concentric rings around the main temple complex. It is important to note that in this temple town, the temple occupies the brahmaveedhi, the central scared portion and the settlements are seen in the veedhis, those prescribed for habitation in the old texts.
6. REFLECTING SOCIAL POSITION IN THE BUILT FABRIC

The traditional architecture in Kerala is best manifested in the timber works of the indigenous craftsmen. The traditional buildings of south Kerala, including the heritage structures found in the fort area which predates 19th century use timber as the major building material. The superstructures as well as the roofing framework in these buildings are made using timber. Whereas, in north Kerala the major building material was laterite stone which was easily available. The reliance on the building materials has contributed to the scale and proportion of the traditional housing patterns. In the case of the agraharams in Thiruvananthapuram the major building material used was a locally available inferior variety of laterite stone, locally known as cheekkal . The now availability of this stone has made the owners to go for ordinary bricks. The cementing materials as well as the plastering materials used in the old days were different from those used today. In the past mud mortar was used, in the palaces and the houses of the nobles and other prominent communities they used lime plaster, with jaggery, sand and the oil extracted from a fish9 as the ingredients added to it. Roofing was done using thatch or clay tiles (fish scale tiles and Mangalore tiles). The thatch roof demanded periodic care as it has to be renewed every year; this ensured the proper maintenance of the roofing system. The building materials used and the scale of the building reflected the economic status of its occupants. When compared to the agraharams in Thiruvananthapuram, the agraharams of Kalpathy in Palakkad District of north Kerala are much larger and embellished. The reason behind this was undoubtedly attributed to the higher economic viability of its occupants. Unlike the Brahmin migrants in Thiruvananthapuram, who were employed in the temple, the Brahmin settlers in Kalpathy were associated with trade. The commercial activities boosted the economic profile of these settlers and it got transcribed into the
Interview with senior Chittatinkara Madhavan Pillai Vaidyan, Koottamvila, Thiruvananthapuram (2011). According to Madhavan Pillai, the oil/secretion from a fish locally known as varal or bral is added to the lime mortar.
13
9

architecture also. The agraharams in Kalpathy come under the category of muzhumana or the complete form of the house, whereas the agraharams in Thiruvananthapuram are usually of the lesser scale. The different typologies of the agraharams within a same settlement suggest the existence of the various hierarchies within the Brahmin community itself. The most venerated scholarly class of Brahmins always occupied the larger agraharams which were known as muzhumana , whereas the ordinary temple staffs owned the aramana and the mukkalmama . The lowest in the hierarchy were those who did service works within the community itself; their houses reflected their lower social standing as they lived in kalmana , the smallest of the agraharam typology.

THE MUZHUMANA, ARAMANA, MUKKALMANA AND KALMANA TYPOLOGIES WITH THEIR RELATIVE SIZE.

The Brahmins being a religious faction took care to incorporate within their architecture certain patterns and traditions that reflect their Vedic roots. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with the Colonial influence and trade relationships with other nations, a wide variety of building materials became available in the Indian market. When the rich and influential Brahmin settlers went for imported Burmese teak, most of the orthodox

14

stock still opted for the simple bamboo as a major building material.10 The reason behind this is the religious association the Brahmins had with the bamboo plant. The new building materials exported via ship was ridiculed by the orthodox Brahmins as impure and thus not considered for building activities. If this was the scene in the orthodox setup, then there was another group of Brahmins who were more exposed to the Western ways of life. With the British occupation of India, the Brahmins were one of the communities to embrace the new ways of Western education which in turn helped them to acquire the favour of the British. Learned Brahmins were always associated with the royals as well as the British, who were their new masters.
7. CONCLUSION

The agraharam settlements of today have undergone transformation. The agraharam settlements in Thanjavur, near Kumbapettai in the post independence period consisted of thirty six households, a small settlement; however, still it was a powerful, introvert community holding firm to the old taboos of caste system and Brahmin dominance in the society. They had imposed several restrictions on access to the agraharams. Even in 1950s, the non-Brahmin and Dalit communities were not allowed to set foot on the main street; they had to come to the back door. The Temple Entry act of 1947 meant that members of all castes had the legal right to go to the Vishnu and Shiva temples in the agraharam, but in practice they did not do so and the old ban on their admission was still being observed in the post independent Kumbapettai.11 This high degree of internal interaction and external exclusiveness (Gough 1960) exhibited by the Brahmin community is exhibited in their settlement pattern and in the spatial organization of their houses. The agraharams in East Fort, Thiruvananthapuram dates to the 18th century. When compared to the agraharam settlements of the great temple towns of Tamilnadu, the Thiruvananthapuram agraharams are far less in concentration; the restrictions to other caste members were also less. The old form of life in the agraharams changed during the 1940s, with the Hitler s War (World War II), says 92 year old Krishna Iyer. During the time of the war and after, many youngsters from the agraharams migrated out in search of

Bamboo was an integral part in the upanayanam and marriage ceremonies associated with the Brahmin community. As a building material, it was generally used as rafters of the roof frame which supported the tiles or thatch on top.
11 A Companion to the Anthropology of India, Isabelle Clark-Decs, from the description of the Kumbapettai agraharams given by the anthropologist Gough, where she stayed in 1951-52.

10

15

better employment opportunities .12 The transformation of the old form of agraharams had started then. With the emigration of the local Brahmin community, the agraharams were often occupied by the members of other castes. The remaining Brahmins shut themselves away from the new occupants. The open thinna in front of the agraharams was closed and the once active space of interaction and heated Vedic discussion have been lost forever. After independence most of the great temples came under the control of the new government and thus the traditional system of management changed, with this many of the Brahmins who were traditionally associated with the temple lost their job. This in turn made them to look for alternative ways of living. Many of the agraharams began to run catering service, supplying homemade vegetarian food. A few of them were even converted into hotels; the thinna got converted into shops. From the architectural point of view the agraharams in Kerala are unique and different from the other agraharam settlements of the great temple towns of Tamilnadu, at the same time it draws a contrasting picture of the traditional Kerala style of architecture as well. The prime objective of this research was to compare the vernacular architecture with the design and planning of the agraharams, and the various socioeconomic, religious and political factors behind it. The agraharams in Kerala have borrowed some features from the traditional vernacular architecture, like in the case of building materials, timber which was easily available and common in Kerala was also used extensively in the agraharams. However, other than this, the spatial organization of the Tamil Brahmin houses in Kerala remains unique and untouched.

12

Interview with Krishna Iyer, Tippu Street, East Fort, Thiruvananthapuram (2011).
16

8. REFERENCES:

Published works: 1. Thapar Romila, Early India: From Origins to AD 1300, 2002; Penguin Books 2. Sadashivan S.N., A social history of India, APH Publishing, 2000 3. Social Formations of Early South India, Rajan Gurukkal. 4. A Companion to the Anthropology of India, Isabelle Clark-Decs 5. I.H. Hacker, Kerala; the land of Palms, London Missionary Society, 1912. 6. Travancore State Manual, Shangunny Menon P. Unpublished works: 1. Guiding Transformations for Conserving the Agraharam Housing, Fort area Thiruvananthapuram, Ayyappan K.A. (2000), S.P.A. Conservation Dept Thesis work 2. Agraharams, a changing paradigm work from College of Engineering Trivandrum. 3. Motivations for the Tamil Brahmin migration to Kerala during the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, Arjun Venkat, American School of Bombay. 4. Jacob Joseph Koduveliparambil, Construction Practices in Traditional Dwellings of Kerala (Thesis), 1997.

17