The definitive guide to South Asian lingo
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Noun.
0

Definition

Jallikattu is the Tamil term given to "bull fighting" or "bull taming". It is a socio cultural event attended by many of Tamil Nadus rural population and is conducted in Tamil Nadu as a part of Pongal celebrations usually on Mattu Pongal day. Evidence of jallikattu can be seen in rock paintings dating to the bronze age and the event is carried out in different forms. The ancient greeks enjoyed a similar event.

Although it is similar to the Spanish running of the bulls, in Jallikattu, the bull is not killed and the 'matadors' try to ride the bull or take off a pennant from the bulls horns. More often that not it is the tamilian "matador" who is injured. A specific breed of cattle is bred for this purpose and the bull is supposed to be naturally aggressive.

Several movies featuring Jallikattu have been made in Tamil. The most popular among them is Murattu Kalai starring Rajinikanth who plays the role of a professional bull tamer. Virumaandi, released in 2004, has kamal Hassan playing a similiar role and he is also known to have acted without stunt doubles.

Usage

Look at that Sheela, she behaves like a jallikattu bull after just 2 drinks.
Added 2012-01-20 by porkipaya

Root

Tamil

Region

Tamil Nadu

Related Terms

kumbh mela