2-Apr-06 (Created: 2-Apr-06) | More in 'Humanities 2007'

Looking up 'Indra Neelam'

It is not uncommon in Telugu to come across the following or something suggestive of the same

Aaa kanulu Indra Neelala ganulu

That roughly translates to:

The adorning eyes, mine shafts of royal blue

Belaboring the translation

At least that was my thought, as "gani" translates to a "mine" while "ganulu" stands for plural.

I wasn't sure though what is the equivalent of "Indra Neelam". I wasn't even sure the meaning of it in Telugu. So I looked up a small telugu dictionary. It literally, albeit quite unambitiously, says a blue stone.

It would have been interesting if the shade of blue referred by "Indra Neelam" and "Royal blue" are the same. Probably not. But if they were, "Indra" is the King of the Gods, and "Royal Blue" would have been an apt translation, translating not only the meaning but the importance of the color.

Routed to sapphire

A blue stone reference brings up Sapphire in Websters, pointing to a bright blue, with the following synonyms


On the "gani" part

Being a "mine" refers to the intractable depth, in this case being applied to the eyes.

Speaking of deep and of vastness, here is a rough translation from a folk song

I have travelled far to the shores of the Ocean, unlike what I was told it is clearly no match to the vastness of my Venki's heart