The Namboothiris (Brahmins) of Kerala are acknowledged as being among the foremost Vedic scholars of India. In fact, among all the various Brahmin groups in India, it is only in the Vedic chanting of the Namboothiris that one can find a relic of the PIE (Proto-Indo-European) language. The Brahmins in Kerala are said to have originally settled in thirty-two villages in the early 5th century. Payyannur was among the northern most of traditional Brahmin settlements in Kerala. One peculiarity of the Brahmins of this village is that they are matrilineal, which is absent among other Brahmins in Kerala, perhaps in the whole of India. The Namboothiris live in joint families at their Illam. An Illam is made with a unique architectural style where the courtyard is within the house. The Namboothiris played a major role in precipitating the emergence of Malayalam as a language distinct from Tamil. This is indicated by the fact that the Malayalam language has significant Sanskrit influence. The Bharamins introduced the Aryan way of life to Kerala, which is followed by Hindus all across Kerala today.