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Vaelaal mukatha kaliru
On marshy ground,where the foot sinks, even a fox can beat a mighty elephant,
With fearless eyes on his majestic face, and two spears too of ivory.
The bravery and majesty of the elephant, with his ivory tusks, is described in some detail in this Kural, to bring out the unfortunate plight of this grand creature being caught helplessly in the midst of a marshy bog, and being ignominiously killed by an insignificant fox.
V V S Iyer interprets the phrase, involving (Vetal) to mean an elephant, which is naturally fearless, and has earlier faced a host of men with spears.