CHILAW, n.p. A place on the west coast of Ceylon, an old seat of the pearl-fishery. The name is a corruption of the Tam. salabham, ‘the diving’ ; in Singhalese it is Halavatta. The name was commonly applied by the Portuguese to the whole aggregation of shoals (Baixos de Chilao) in the Gulf of Manaar, between Ceylon and the coast of Madura and Tinnevelly.

1543.—“Shoals of Chilao.” See quotation under BEADALA.

1610.—“La pesqueria de Chilao…por hazerse antiguamente in un puerto del mismo nombre en la isla de Seylan…llamado asi por ista causa ; por que chilao, en lengua Chengala,…quiere dezir pesqueria.”—Teixeira, Pt. ii. 29.

CHILLUM, s. H. chilam ; “the part of the hukka (see HOOKA) which contains the tobacco and charcoal balls, whence it is sometimes loosely used for the pipe itself, or the act of smoking it” (Wilson). It is also applied to the replenishment of the bowl, in the same way as a man asks for “another glass.” The tobacco, as used by the masses in the hubble-bubble, is cut small and kneaded into a pulp with goor, i.e. molasses, and a little water. Hence actual contact with glowing charcoal is needed to keep it alight.

1781.—“Dressing a hubble-bubble, per week at 3 chillums a day. fan 0, dubs 3, cash 0.”

Prison Experiences in Captivity of Hon. J. Lindsay, in Lives of Lindsays, iii.

1811.—“They have not the same scruples for the Chillum as for the rest of the Hooka, and it is often lent…whereas the very proposition for the Hooka gives rise frequently to the most ridiculous quarrels.”—Solvyns, iii.

1828.—“Every sound was hushed but the noise of that wind…and the occasional bubbling of my hookah, which had just been furnished with another chillum.”—The Kuzzilbash, i. 2.

1829.—“Tugging away at your hookah, find no smoke ; a thief having purloined your silver chelam and surpoose.”—John Shipp, ii. 159.

1848.—“Jos however…could not think of moving till his baggage was cleared, or of travelling until he could do so with his chillum.”—Vanity Fair, ii. ch. xxiii.

CHILLUMBRUM, n.p. A town in S. Arcot, which is the site of a famous temple of Siva, properly Shidamburam. Etym. obscure. [Garstin (Man. S. Arcot, 400) gives the name as Chedambram, or more correctly Chittambalam, ‘the atmosphere of wisdom.’]

1755.—“Scheringham (Seringam), Schalembron, et Gengy m’offroient également la retraite après laquelle je soupirois.”—Anquetil du Perron, Zendav. Disc. Prelim. xxviii.

CHILLUMCHEE, s. H. chilamchi, also silfchi, and silpchi, of which chilamchi is probably a corruption. A basin of brass (as in Bengal), or tinned copper (as usually in the West and South) for washing hands. The form of the word seems Turkish, but we cannot trace it.

1715.—“We prepared for our first present, viz., 1000 gold mohurs…the unicorn’s horn…the astoa (?) and chelumgie of Manilla work.…”—In Wheeler, ii. 246.

1833.—“Our supper was a peelaw…when it was removed a chillumchee and goblet of warm water was handed round, and each washed his hands and mouth.”—P. Gordon, Fragment of the Journal of a Tour, &c.

1851.—“When a chillumchee of water sans soap was provided, ‘Have you no soap ?’ Sir C. Napier asked—”—Mawson, Indian Command of Sir C. Napier.

1857.—“I went alone to the Fort Adjutant, to report my arrival, and inquire to what regiment of the Bengal army I was likely to be posted.

“Army !—regiment !’ was the reply. ‘There is no Bengal Army ; it is all in revolt.…Provide yourself with a camp-bedstead, and a chillumchee, and wait for orders.’

“I saluted and left the presence of my superior officer, deeply pondering as to the possible nature and qualities of a chillumchee, but not venturing to enquire further.” —Lt.-Col. Lewin, A Fly on the Wheel, p. 3.

There is an Anglo-Indian tradition, which we would not vouch for, that one of the orators on the great Hastings trial depicted the oppressor on some occasion, as “grasping his chillum in one hand and his chillumchee in the other.”
The latter word is used chiefly by Anglo-Indians of the Bengal Presidency and their servants. In Bombay the article has another name. And it is told of a gallant veteran of the old Bengal Artillery, who was full of “Presidential” prejudices, that on hearing the Bombay army commended by a brother officer, he broke out in just wrath : “The Bombay Army ! Don’t talk to me of the Bombay Army ! They call a chillumchee a gindy !—THE BEASTS !”

  By PanEris using Melati.

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