Language of Kollam

The official and administrative language of Kollam is Malayalam. As an off shoot of Dravidian language, Malayalam is rich and diverse. The word 'Malayalam' has been derived from a combination of two words, 'mala' meaning 'the mountain' and 'alam' meaning 'the land'. It is not only the official language of Kollam but is widely spoken by the majority of the population in Kerala.

History of Malayalam language clearly points out the fact that it bears a strong resemblance with the Tamil language. Certain Malayalam expressions were influenced by Tamil. Several words from Portuguese, English, Arabic, Marathi, Dutch, Sanskrit and Persian words have also been incorporated. Malayalam has 37 consonants and 16 vowels. It also has an independent script.

The spread of the language of Malayalam was initiated by a Nestorian Christia in 825 AD, who basically was a trading merchant and had settled down in Kollam. The era of Malayalam began in the year 825 A.D. Kollam, therefore plays a pivotal role in the evolution and development of this language.

As the native language of Kollam, Malayalam has evolved and developed under external influences. Contemporary Malayalam allows extensive use of English idioms and other lexical items. Other than Malayalam the other Kollam languages are Kannada, Telegu and Tamil. Small sections of the population also speak communal dialects, which are variations of Malayalam. English is the most popular foreign language in Kollam. Many people especially in offices and commercial centers understand and speak English.

Last Updated on 9/15/2011