MOORUM, s. A word used in Western India for gravel, &c., especially as used in road-metal. The word appears to be Mahratti. Molesworth gives “murum, a fissile kind of stone, probably decayed Trap.” [Murukallu is the Tel. name for Laterite. (Also see CABOOK.)]

[1875.—“There are few places where Morram, or decomposed granite, is not to be found.”—Gribble, Cuddapah, 247.

[1883.—“Underneath is Morambu, a good filtering medium.”—Le Fanu, Salem, ii. 43.]

MOOTSUDDY, s. A native accountant. Hind. mutasaddi from Ar. mutasaddi.

1683.—“Cossadass ye Chief Secretary, Mutsuddies, and ye Nabobs Chief Eunuch will be paid all their money beforehand.”—Hedges, Diary, Jan. 6; [Hak. Soc. i. 61].

[1762.—“Muttasuddies.” See under GOMASTA.]

1785.—“This representation has caused us the utmost surprise. Whenever the Mutsuddies belonging to your department cease to yield you proper obedience, you must give them a severe flogging.”—Tippoo’s Letters, p. 2.

” “Old age has certainly made havock on your understanding, otherwise you would have known that the Mutusuddies here are not the proper persons to determine the market prices there.”—Ibid. p. 118.

[1809.—“The regular battalions have also been riotous, and confined their Mootusudee, the officer who keeps their accounts, and transacts the public business on the part of the commandant.”—Broughton, Letters, ed. 1892, p. 135.]

MOPLAH, s. Malayal. mappila. The usual application of this word is to the indigenous Mahommedans of Malabar; but it is also applied to the indigenous (so-called) Syrian Christians of Cochin and Travancore. In Morton’s Life of Leyden the word in the latter application is curiously misprinted as madilla. The derivation of the word is very obscure. Wilson gives ma-pilla, ‘mother’s son, “as sprung from the intercourse of foreign colonists, who were persons unknown, with Malabar women.” Nelson, as quoted below interprets the word as ‘bridegroom’ (it should however rather be ‘son-in-law’).1 Dr. Badger suggests that it is from the Arabic verb falaha, and means ‘a cultivator’ (compare the fellah of Egypt), whilst Mr. C. P. Brown expresses his conviction that it was a Tamil mispronunciation of the Arabic mu’abbar, ‘from over the water.’ No one of these greatly commends itself. [Mr. Logan (Malabar, ii. ccviii.) and the Madras Glossary derive it from Mal. ma, Skt. maha, ‘great,’ and Mal. pilla, ‘a child.’ Dr. Gundert’s view is that Mapilla was an honorary title given to colonists from the W., perhaps at first only to their representatives.]

1516.—“In all this country of Malabar there are a great quantity of Moors, who are of the same language and colour as the Gentiles of the country.…They call these Moors Mapulers; they carry on nearly all the trade of the seaports.”—Barbosa, 146.

1767.—“Ali Raja, the Chief of Cananore, who was a Muhammadan, and of the tribe called Mapilla, rejoiced at the success and conquests of a Muhammadan Chief.”—H. of Hydur, p. 184.

1782.—“…les Maplets reçurent les coutumes et les superstitions des Gentils, sous l’empire des quels ils vivoient. C’est pour se conformer aux usages des Malabars, que les enfans des Maplets n’héritent point de leurs pères, mais des frères de leurs mères.”—Sonnerat, i. 193.


“Of Moplas fierce your hand has tam’d,
And monsters that your sword has maim’d.”

Life and Letters of J. Ritson, 1833, i. 114.

1800.—“We are not in the most thriving condition in this country. Polegars, nairs, and moplas in arms on all sides of us.”—Wellington, i. 43.

1813.—“At one period the Moplahs created great commotion in Travancore, and towards the end of the 17th century massacred the chief of Anjengo, and all the English gentlemen belonging to the settlement, when on a public visit to the Queen of Attinga.”—Forbes, Or. Mem. i. 402; [2nd ed. i. 259].

1868.—“I may add in concluding my notice that the Kallans alone of all the castes of Madura call the Mahometans ‘mapilleis’ or bridegrooms (Moplahs).”—Nelson’s Madura, Pt. ii. 55.

MORA, s. Hind. morha. A stool (tabouret); a footstool. In common colloquial use.

[1795.—“The old man, whose attention had been chiefly attracted by a Ramnaghur morah, of which he was desirous to know the construction,…departed.”—Capt. Blunt, in Asiat. Res., vii. 92.


  By PanEris using Melati.

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