தொல்தமிழர் அறிவியல் –85 : 26. யானை
Study of Elephants
“The quotation from Mullaippattu (5: 29 – 36) speaks of young mahouts shouting in a language at the elephants to make them swallow the pieces of sugarcane, saali stalks and green leaves of Adimathuram plants. We infer out of this that elephants are intelligigent enough to understand the language of mahouts. Similar information is available in a poem of Ceevaka cinthamani.
Elephants understand human language, as referred to in Sangam literature has become a proven fact by the researchers in the Sussex University, U.K. They understood that the language of ferocious and war-like Mssai tribe the elephants understood and avoid them. But when the quite-going Kmaba tribesmen speak, the elephants do not get perturbed.
A quotation from purananooru (22: 1 – 9) shown above refers to the flow of musth from male elephants. Flowing of that liquid makes the elephant angry and moody. A quote from Maduraikkanchi also conveys the same information. Also the poem adds that elephants become ferocious and angry, besides being sexy when they discharge the musth.
A few Natrinai passages and a quote from Ahananooru speak in detail about the behaviour and peculiarities of elephants at the time of letting out musth. It has to be understood that ancient Tamil Poets as evidenced by their poems were very well aware of the ins and outs of elephants even in those days. “ –Editor.