TUXALL, TAKSAUL, s. The Mint. Hind. taksal, from Skt. tankasala, ‘coin-hall.’

[1757.—“Our provisions were regularly sent us from the Dutch Tanksal.…”— Holwell’s Narr. of Attack on Calcutta, p. 34; in Wheeler, Early Records, 248.

[1811.—“The Ticksali, or superintendent of the mint. …”—Kirkpatrick, Nepaul, 201.]

TYPHOON, s.A tornado or cyclone-wind; a sudden storm, a ‘norwester’ (q.v.). Sir John Barrow (see Autobiog. 57) ridicules “learned antiquarians” for fancying that the Chinese took typhoon from the Egyptian Typhon, the word being, according to him, simply the Chinese syllables, ta-fung, ‘Great Wind.’ His ridicule is misplaced. With a monosyllabic language like the Chinese (as we have remarked elsewhere) you may construct a plausible etymology, to meet the requirements of the sound alone, from anything and for anything. And as there is no evidence that the word is in Chinese use at all, it would perhaps be as fair a suggestion to derive it from the English “tough ’un.” Mr. Giles, who seems to think that the balance of evidence is in favour of this (Barrow’s) etymology, admits a serious objection to be that the Chinese have special names for the typhoon, and rarely, if ever, speak of it vaguely as a ‘great wind.’ The fact is that very few words of the class used by seafaring and trading people, even when they refer to Chinese objects, are directly taken from the Chinese language. E.g. Mandarin, pagoda, chop, cooly, tutenague;— none of these are Chinese. And the probability is that Vasco and his followers got the tufão, which our sailors made into touffon and then into typhoon, as they got the monçuo which our sailors made into monsoon, direct from the Arab pilots.

The Arabic word is tufan, which is used habitually in India for a sudden and violent storm. Lane defines it as meaning ‘an overpowering rain, … Noah’s flood,’ etc. And there can be little doubt of its identity with the Greek [Greek Text] tufwn or [Greek Text] tufwn [But Burton (Ar. Nights, iii. 257) alleges that it is pure Arabic, and comes from the root tauf, ‘going round.’] This word [Greek Text] tufwn (the etymologists say, from [Greek Text] tufw, ‘I raise smoke’) was applied to a demon-giant or Titan, and either directly from the etym. meaning or from the name of the Titan (as in India a whirlwind is called ‘a Devil or Pisachee’) to a ‘waterspout,’ and thence to analogous stormy phenomena. ‘Waterspout’ seems evidently the meaning of [Greek Text] tufwn in the Meteorologica of Aristotle ( [Greek Text] gignetai men oun tufwn … [Greek Text] k. t. l.) iii. 1; the passage is exceedingly difficult to render clearly); and also in the quotation which we give from Aulus Gellius. The word may have come to the Arabs either in maritime intercourse, or through the translations of Aristotle. It occurs (al-tufan) several times in the Koran; thus in sura, vii. 134, for a flood or storm, one of the plagues of Egypt, and in s. xxix. 14 for the Deluge.
Dr. F. Hirth, again (Journ. R. Geog. Soc. i. 260), advocates the quasi-Chinese origin of the word. Dr. Hirth has found the word Tai (and also with the addition of fung, ‘wind’) to be really applied to a certain class of cyclonic winds, in a Chinese work on Formosa, which is a re-issue of a book originally published in 1694. Dr. Hirth thinks t’ai as here used (which is not the Chinese word ta or tai, ‘great,’ and is expressed by a different character) to be a local Formosan term; and is of opinion that the combination t’ai-fung is “a sound so near that of typhoon as almost to exclude all other conjectures, if we consider that the writers using the term in European languages were travellers distinctly applying it to storms encountered in that part of the China Sea.” Dr. Hirth also refers to F. Mendes Pinto and the passages (quoted below) in which he says tufão is the Chinese name for such storms. Dr. Hirth’s paper is certainly worthy of much more attention than the scornful assertion of Sir John Barrow, but it does not induce us to change our view as to the origin of typhoon.
Observe that the Port. tufão distinctly represents tufan and not t’ai-fung, and the oldest English form ‘tuffon’ does the same, whilst it is not by any means unquestionable that these Portuguese and English forms were first applied in the China Sea, and not in the Indian Ocean. Observe also Lord Bacon’s use of the word typhones in his Latin below; also that tufan is an Arabic word, at least as old as the Koran, and closely allied in sound and meaning to [Greek Text] tufwn whilst it is habitually used for a storm in Hindustani. This is shown by the quotations below (1810–1836); and Platts defines tufan as “a violent storm of wind and rain, a tempest, a typhoon; a flood, deluge, inundation, the universal deluge” etc.; also tufani, “stormy, tempestuous … boisterous, quarrelsome, violent, noisy, riotous.”
Little importance is to be attached to Pinto’s linguistic remarks such as that quoted, or even to the like dropt by Couto. We apprehend that Pinto made exactly the same mistake that Sir John Barrow did; and we need not wonder at it, when so many of our countrymen in India have supposed hackery to be a Hindustani word, and when we find even the learned H. H. Wilson assuming tope (in the sense of ‘grove’) to be in

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