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Raṅgolī and Kōlam
(3,723 words)

The kōlam is a daily women’s ritual art form created before dawn (and sometimes before dusk) by millions of Tamil Hindu women throughout Tamil Nadu in southeastern India. Sometimes referred to in English as household marks or threshold designs, the word kōlam in the Tamil language means form and beauty. The kōlam is drawn on thresholds, floors, and walls in houses, temples, and businesses. What is striking is that much of the time, the kōlam is ephemera…

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Nagarajan, Vijaya, “Raṅgolī and Kōlam”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Edited by: Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 25 May 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2212-5019_beh_COM_000183>
First published online: 2018



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