VEDDAS, n.p. An aboriginal—or at least a forest—people of Ceylon. The word is said to mean ‘hunters,’ [Tam. vedu, ‘hunting’].

1675.—“The Weddas (who call themselves Beddas) are all original inhabitants from old time, whose descent no one is able to tell.”—Ryklof van Goens, in Valentijn, Ceylon, 208.

1681.—“In this Land are many of these wild men they call Vaddahs, dwelling near no other Inhabitants. They speak the Chingalayes Language. They kill Deer, and dry the Flesh over the Fire … their Food being only Flesh. They are very expert with their Bows. … They have no Towns nor Houses, only live by the waters under a Tree.”—Knox, 61–62.

1770.—“The Bedas who were settled in the northern part of the island (Ceylon) … go almost naked, and, upon the whole, their manners and government are the same with that of the Highlanders of Scotland.”(!) —Raynal (tr. 1777), i. 90.

VELLARD, s. This is a word apparently peculiar to the Island of Bombay, used in the sense which the quotation shows. We have failed to get any elucidation of it from local experience; but there can be little doubt that it is a corruption of the Port. vallado, ‘a mound or embankment.’ [It is generally known as ‘Hornby’s Vellard,’ after the Governor of that name; but it seems to have been built about 1752, some 20 years before Hornby’s time (see Douglas, Bombay and W. India, i. 140).]

1809.—“At the foot of the little hill of Sion is a causeway or vellard, which was built by Mr. Duncan, the present Governor, across a small arm of the sea, which separates Bombay from Salsette. … The vellard was begun A.D. 1797, and finished in 1805, at an expense of 50,575 rupees.”—Maria Graham, 8.

VELLORE, n.p. A town, and formerly a famous fortress in the district of N. Arcot, 80 m. W. of Madras. It often figures in the wars of the 18th century, but is best known in Europe for the mutiny of the Sepoys there in 1806. The etym. of the name Vellur is unknown to us. Fra Paolino gives it as Velur, ‘the Town of the Lance’; and Col. Branfill as ‘Velur, from Vel, a benefit, benefaction.’ [Cox-Stuart (Man. N. Arcot, ii. 417) and the writer of the Madras Gloss. agree in deriving it from Tam. vel, ‘the babool tree, Acacia arabica,’ and ur, ‘village.’]

VENDU-MASTER, s. We know-this word only from the notifications which we quote. It was probably taken from the name of some Portuguese office of the same kind. [In the quotation given below from Owen it seems that the word was in familiar use at Johanna, and the context shows that his duty was somewhat like that of the chowdry, as he provided fowls, cattle, fruit, &e., for the expedition.]

1781.—From an advertisement in the India Gazette of May 17th it appears to have been an euphemism for Auctioneer; [also see Busteed, Echoes of Old Calcutta, 3rd ed. p. 109].

„ “Mr. Donald … begs leave to acquaint them that the Vendu business will in future be carried on by Robert Donald, and W. Williams.”—India Gazette, July 28.

1793.—“The Governor-General is pleased to notify that Mr. Williamson as the Company’s Vendu Master is to have the superintendence and management of all Sales at the Presidency.”—In Seton-Karr, ii. 99. At pp. 107, 114, also are notifications of sales by “G. Williamson, Vendu Master.”

[1823.—“One of the chiefs, a crafty old rogue, commonly known by the name of ‘Lord Rodney’ … acted as captain of the port, interpreter, Vendue-Master and master of the ceremonies. …”—Owen, Narrative of Voyages to explore the shores of Africa, &c., i. 179.]

VENETIAN, s. This is sometimes in books of the 18th and preceding century used for Sequins. See under CHICK.

1542.—“At the bottom of the cargo (?cifa), among the ballast, she carried 4 big guns (tiros), and others of smaller size, and 60,000 venetians in gold, which were destined for Coje Çafar, in order that with this money he should in all speed provide necessaries for the fleet which was coming.”—Correa, iv. 250.

1675.—Fryer gives among coins and weights at Goa:

“The Venetian … 18 Tangoes, 30 Rees.”
—p. 206.

1752.—“At this juncture a gold mohur is found to be worth 14 Arcot Rupees, and a Venetian 4½ Arcot Rupees.”—In Long, p. 32.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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