This section is from the book "Some Contributions Of South India To Indian Culture", by S. Krishnaswami Aiyangar. Also available from Amazon: Some Contributions of South India to Indian Culture.
In the previous sections the limits of Tamil land were marked by a belt of country beginning with Pulikat on the east coast and terminating with the Kalyanpuri river, the northern limit of Kanara on the west coast. On the farther side of this frontier were the class of people regarded as robbers by profession and described in Tamil literature as Vadukar, who extended even southward of this frontier line in certain localities. This is just exactly the limit indicated in the Periplus for the Tamil country as all the Dakhan further north fell into a distinct category which the author of the Periplus1 called Dachinabades (Sans. Dakshinapatha). According to this author "beyond Baryagaza (Broach) the adjoining coast extends in a highland from north to south; and so this region is called Dachinabades, for Dachi-nos in the language of the natives means "south," the inland country back from the coast towards the east comprises many desert regions and great mountains and all kinds of wild beasts - leopards, tigers, elephants, enormous serpents, hyenas and baboons of many sorts and many populous nations as far as the Ganges." The work further states that all the muslins, etc., of the east coast of this country had to be brought across "great tracts without roads" to the two marts of Paethana (Paithan) on the Godaveri and Tagara (Ter, in the Nizam's dominions). The limit of this region is marked at "White island" on the west coast, an island situate a little to the northwest of Mangalore with which according to this author Damirica (Dramidaka or Tamilakam) began. This description of the country set against the west coast from Broach to Mangalore almost, will answer to the description of the Tamils who called the whole region, a little more or less, Dandararryam. According to the information that could be gathered from Tamil literature of this period the western boundary of this forest region would stop short somewhere near Goa on the west coast. Next the frontier on this side came the Tuju-Konkan territory of the Tamil Chief Nannan. To the south of this territory was the territory of Kerala, the land of the Cheras. One Chera ruler of this time went by the name, rather a distinguishing epithet, "Adu-kotpattu-Seral-Adan," i.e., the Chera king who carried off cattle. This Chera is celebrated in the sixth "ten" of the classical collection called "ten1 tens" by a poetess by name Kak-kaipadiniyar Nachchejlaiyar; in other words "the poetess the good Sellai who sang of the
1 Edn. by W. Shoff, p. 43.
1 Pandit Maha. Swaminatha Aiyar's edn., 98-99. 6 crow." In the epilogue he is said to have taken these cattle in Dandaranyam which the commentator explains as a division of country in Aryanadu or Aryadesa. Thus then it is clear that across the northern frontier of the Tamil country was a belt of land occupied by various tribes, and behind them was the great forest country of Dandaka, the far-famed Dandaka of the Ramayana and the Mahakantara perhaps of a later time.