One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
In South India: the fifth and lowest division of society, outside the four brahminic divisions, and now comprising the scheduled castes; (collectively) the members of this class, pariahs, untouchables.
Early 19th century. From Tamil pañcamapantam and its etymon late Sanskrit pañcama-bandha fifth caste (from Sanskrit pañcama + bandha bondage from bandh-), a South Indian (probably Jain) variant of Sanskrit pañcamā jāti, lit. ‘fifth birth’.
Panchama Bandham/ˌpantʃəmə ˈbandəm/
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