SOODRA, SOODER, s. Skt. sudra, [usually derived from root. suc, ‘to be afflicted,’ but probably of non-Aryan origin]. The (theoretical) Fourth Caste of the Hindus. In South India, there being no claimants of the 2nd or 3rd classes, the highest castes among the (so-called) Sudras come next after the Brahmans in social rank, and sudra is a note of respect, not of the contrary as in Northern India.

1630.—“The third Tribe or Cast, called the Shudderies.”—Lord, Display, &c., ch. xii.

1651.—“La quatrième lignée est celle des Soudraes; elle est composée du commun peuple: cette lignée a sous soy beaucoup et diverses familles, dont une chacune prétend surpasser l’ature. …”—Abr. Roger, Fr. ed. 1670, p. 8.

[c. 1665.—“The fourth caste is called Charados or Soudra.”—Tavernier, ed. Ball, ii. 184.

[1667.—“… and fourthly, the tribe of Seydra, or artisans and labourers.”—Bernier, ed. Constable, 325.]

1674.—“The … Chudrer (these are the Nayres).”—Faria y Sousa, ii. 710.

1717.—“The Brahmens and the Tschuddirers are the proper persons to satisfy your Enquiries.”—Phillips, An Account of the Religion, &c., 14.

1858.—“Such of the Aborigines as yet remained were formed into a fourth class, the Çudra, a class which has no rights, but only duties.”—Whitney, Or. and Ling. Studies, ii. 6.

1867.—“A Brahman does not stand aloof from a Soudra with a keener pride than a Greek Christian shows towards a Copt.”—Dixon, New America, 7th ed. i. 276.

SOOJEE, SOOJY, s. Hind. suji, [which comes probably from Skt. suci, ‘pure’]; a word curiously misinterpreted (“the coarser part of pounded wheat”) by the usually accurate Shakespear. It is, in fact, the fine flour, made from the heart of the wheat, used in India to make bread for European tables. It is prepared by grinding between two millstones which are not in close contact. [Suji “is a granular meal obtained by moistening the grain overnight, then grinding it. The fine flour passes through a coarse sieve, leaving the Suji and bran above. The latter is got rid of by winnowing, and the round, granular meal or Suji, composed of the harder pieces of the grain, remains” (Watt. Econ. Dict. VI. pt. iv. 167).] It is the semolina of Italy. Bread made from this was called in Low Latin simella; Germ. Semmelbrödchen, and old English simnel-cakes. A kind of porridge made with soojee is often called soojee simply. (See ROLONG.)

1810.—“Bread is not made of flour, but of the heart of the wheat, which is very fine, ground into what is called soojy. … Soojy is frequently boiled into ‘stirabout’ for breakfast, and eaten with milk, salt, and butter; though some of the more zealous may be seen to moisten it with porter.”—Williamson, V.M. ii. 135–136.

1878.—“Sujee flour, ground coarse, and water.”—Life in the Mofussil, i. 213.

SOORKY, s. Pounded brick used to mix with lime to form a hydraulic mortar. Hind. from Pers. surkhi, ‘red-stuff.’

c. 1770.—“The terrace roofs and floors of the rooms are laid with fine pulverized stones, which they call zurkee; these are mixed up with lime-water, and an inferior kind of molasses, and in a short time grow as hard and as smooth, as if the whole were one large stone.”—Stavorinus, E.T. i. 514.

1777.—“The inquiry verified the information. We found a large group of miserable objects confined by order of Mr. Mills; some were simply so; some under sentence from him to beat Salkey.”—Report of Impey and others, quoted in Stephen’s Nuncomar and Impey, ii. 201.

1784.—“One lack of 9-inch bricks, and about 1400 maunds of soorky.”—Notifn. in Seton-Karr, i. 34; see also ii. 15.

1811.—“The road from Calcutta to Baracpore … like all the Bengal roads it is paved with bricks, with a layer of sulky, or broken bricks over them.”—Solvyns, Les Hindous, iii. The word is misused as well as miswritten here. The substance in question is khoa (q.v.).

SOORMA, s. Hind. from Pers. surma. Sulphuret of antimony, used for the purpose of darkening the eyes, kuhl of the Arabs, the stimmi and stibium of the ancients. With this Jezebel “painted her eyes” (2 Kings, ix. 30; Jeremiah, iv. 30 R. V.) “With it, I believe, is often confounded the sulphuret of lead, which in N. India is called soormee (ee is the feminine termination in Hindust.), and used as a substitute

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