Historical Records of Rama Bridge
To silence if not to outwit the arrogant, irresponsible Cabinet Ministers in high office in New Delhi and Madras today, I would like to cite a few references from printed books and documents where there are textual references to Rama's Bridge or Adam's Bridge or Sethu Bandhana.
Marco Polo (1254 -1324) was a Venetian trader and explorer who gained fame for his worldwide travels, recorded in his book IL MILIONE (''The Million'' or The Travels of Marco Polo). He visited several ports in India. A book ''On The travels of Marco Polo'' translated by Marsden into English was published in England in 1854. In this book Rama's Bridge has been described as SETABUND-RAMESWARA which only means Setu-Bandha (page-380).
A Catalogue of the Mammals in the Museum of the Hon. East-India Company, East India Company Museum written by Thomas Horsfield (1773-1859), was published in England in 1851. In this Catalogue, Rama's Bridge was used as a reference point to define the expanse of Bharatam. We can see from this Catalogue, adequate pointers to the rich biodiversity of the flora and fauna of Rameshwaram and its environs.
Sir William Jones (1746-1794) in his ''Discourses delivered before the Asiatic society'' published in 1801 (p. 29) has observed as follows:
“The characters, in which the languages of India were originally written, are called Nagarai, from Nagara, a city with the word Deva sometimes prefixed, because they are believed to have been taught by the Divinity himself, who prescribed the aritificial order of them in a voice from heaven. These letters, with no greater variation in their form by the change of straight lines to curves, or conversely, than the Cusick alphabet has received in its way to India, are still adopted in more then twenty kingdoms and flates, from the borders of Cashgar and Khoten, to Rama’s Bridge, and from the “Sindhu to the river of Siam. Nor can I help believing”
Arnold Hermann (1835) in his ''Historical researches into the politics, intercourse, and trade of the principal nations of antiquity'' translated from the German into English, Oxford University Press (p.89) wrote:
“Six years before Christ. The particular object of this inscription is to record the liberality of a certain renowned conqueror named Deb Pal Deb, who overran all India, from the sources of the Ganges to Rama’s bridge at Ceylon, which “is celebrated in the Ramayana.”
William Yates, 1846, A dictionary of Sanscrit and English, designed for the use of private students and of Indian colleges and schools, Baptist Mission Press, (p.821)
"Samudra m. A Shark, a whale; Rama’s bridge, marine mari"
The entry, samudraaru or samudraarah is given the meaning: Rama's bridge.🌹