Pallava period (Social and Cultural History)

by S. Krishnamurthy | 2017 | 143,765 words

This study examines the Social and Cultural History of the Pallava period (as gleaned through the Sculptural Art). The Pallavas (6th-9th century A.D.) mainly ruled over the Tondaimandalam (Tondai Nadu) region in the Northern part of Tamil Nadu (South-India). The Pallava dynasty ensured a golden age of architecture, arts, and spirituality and while ...

Socio-Religious Life of the Pre-Pallava Period

The Sangam texts[1] describe Tamilakam as consisting of five eco-zones or tinai[2] in Tamil viz., Kurinchi, Mullai, Marutam Neital, and Palai with each region having certain characteristic traits and inhabited by people having close kinship (kudi) ties with unique way of living and subsistence pattern such as, hunting and gathering; rearing of animals and rudimentary shifting cultivation; agriculture, fishing, salt manufacturing and maritime trade; plundering and cattle lifting respectively. The people inhabiting these five eco-zones in majority are likewise known as Kuravar and Punavar in the Kurinchi region, Idayar and Ayar in the Mullai region, Ulavar and Velalar in the Marutam region, Valayar, Paratavar and Timilar in the Neital region and Maravar and Vettuvar in the Palai region. Such diversity suggests that the lifestyle of the people was initially influenced by the geographical and topographical conditions of the region. Apart from these, the Sangam literature also mention various other occupational groups. For example Narrinai refers to Umanar[3], i.e. salt merchants especially in Mullai region as well as Kollan[4] (blacksmith) and Porkollar or Thattar[5] (goldsmith). Likewise, Purananuru mentions about Ayar or Idaiyar[6] (cowherds), Ulavar[7] (tillers), Kadambar[8], (robbers), Kuliyar[9] (highway robbers), Karumiyar[10] (metal workers), Kuyavan[11] (potters), Kurattiyan[12] (Gypsies), Kuttar[13] (dancers), Panar (bards), Tudiar and Paraiyar (drummers)[14], Kollar[15] (Iron smiths), Tachchan[16] (carpenters), etc. Maduraikkanchi[17] further mention about Paratavar, i.e. the fisher class community, who also engage themselves in boat making. Similarly the epic Silappadikaram in its chapter Indiravilavureduttakadai mentions many occupations like grain-dealers, Vannar (Washerman), Valainar (fishermen), Kanjakarar (bronze vessel makers), Tunnakarar (tailors), Nina vilaignar (butchers), Kuviar (seller of sweet cakes), Vettuvar (hunter), Aruvaiyar (weavers), Kodiyar (street dancers)[18], etc.

The Marutam region formed of fertile agricultural tracts, watered by major rivers, witnessed the emergence of the three major ruling powers (Mu vendar) viz., Chera, Chola and Pandya as well as minor chieftains (velirs). The region witnessed flourishment of settlements having political, commercial and agrarian importance. By the 5th century A.D. brahmadeya settlements could also be witnessed in this region, as attested by the inscription from Pulankurichchi[19]. Similarly the Neital region witnessed the emergence of port-cities on its coastal littoral tracts. These two regions also became the focal point for the emergence of new occupations, which later condensed into social groups. It seems that in early period there are no hierarchial social divisions and the society was characterized by closely knit clans having inter-zonal interactions.

From Ahananuru[20] it is known that there are also some brahmanas, who did not follow the traditional occupation and had taken up secular professions like trade. Yet by the time of Silappadikaram[21], a post-Sangam age text, it is known that the brahmanas, who engaged in a profession other than the traditionally assigned works were looked as degraded and are called as Velap-Parppar (the non-sacrificing Brahmins). It seems that, the priestly class already began to assert their superiority as can be seen from the words of the poet Kapilar in Patirrupattu[22],who advices the king to appoint only the brahmanas as ministers. It seems that people from other class were also appointed for that purpose[23]. A hint of resentment against the growing rigidity of caste hierarchy can be had from Puram[24], which states that scholarship, wisdom and character are to be preferred to mere caste. Perhaps during this period there existed two extreme class divisions in the society such as uyar-kulattor (the higher born) and Ilikulattor (the low born) as mentioned in Pattinappalai[25].

For the first time reference to the four fold division of society can be seen in the Tolkappiyam, which gives their names as, Parppar (priests), Arasar, Vendan (rulers), Vanigar (merchants) and Velalar (peasants)[26]. Perhaps, it was a late development due to the influence of the increasing influx of the Brahmanical culture from the northern parts of India. Among these four classes, Tolka=ppiyam asserts the superiority of the Parppar (priests) and says that they are also capable of doing the work of a ruler as well[27].

However, the interaction among the four-fold division of society was not as rigid as it existed in north India. The Velalas are given an equal status with the Arasar and Vanigar community and probably they are all allowed to intermarry[28]. Some among the Velalas held high positions like Mandalatalaivar, Dandatalaivar, etc., and a few became chieftains with the title kavidi conferred on them. The celebrated chieftains viz., Pari, Anji, Kari, Ori, Pehan, etc., belonged to this community[29].

Probably slavery also existed in this age and Purananuru calls them variously as Adiyurai[30], Tudiyan or Pulaiyan[31] and Illisanar[32] and their status as adimai. Kalittogai[33] mentions the system of branding the slaves on the chest in order to identify them. Tolkappiyam[34] states that slaves (Adiyor) and servants (Vinaivalar) should not be represented as heroes in literature.

Women received great respect as a perfectly obedient housewife only and were subordinate to men in all matters. Probably majority of women of this age are illetrate as can be seen from Kuruntogai[35], which mentions that a housewife used to take account of the purchases made for the kitchen by marking on the wall with lines and dots. They were generally treated as weaker sex[36] and Purananuru[37] laments at the miserable practice of the chiefs, who carried away by force unmarried girls from the villages, which they invaded. Perhaps, for this reason, it was adviced in Kalittogai that grown up women should be strictly confined to house, a procedure known as Il serittal[38]. From the same text[39], it is known that the people of this age preferred a male child, as a girl should leave her birth place to an alien’s home. Tolkappiyam[40] mentions the ideal traits of women as shyness, fear, implicit acceptance and retention of elderly advice. It further restricts women from travelling overseas[41] and are treated as impure and untouchable during the period of menstruation[42]. If a woman becomes widow, she is forced either to lead a life of renunciation and hardship or commit sati by consuming herself to the flames of her husband’s pyre[43].

Narrinai[44] and Ahananuru[45] refer to the prevalence of the profession of parattaiyar or kanikaiyar (courtesans) and cheripparattaiyar or kamakkanikaiyar (prostitutes). The prostitutes are regarded as of degraded character and were assigned separate quarters in the suburbs of the city called Parattaiyarcheri. The Silappadikaram[46] and Manimekalai[47] mention large streets inhabited exclusively by the courtesans and dancing girls respectively.

The post–Sangam age literature like Silappadikaram[48] and Manimekalai[49] refer to women ascetics, especially in connection with the heterodox sects like Jainism and Buddhism. From Manimekalai[50] it is learnt that people are hesitant to send young woman unaccompanied outside due to the danger that plagued woman from other men. Great importance is given to the chastity (karpu) of women. There are cases, where a disobedient wife is also punished[51] and men regarded wedded wife as their property and she was indeed also known by the term urimai[52].

Purananuru[53] gives evidence of the existence of Paisacha form of marriage especially practiced by the chiefs invading their neighboring territories, who forcefully carried away the girls. It is understood from Tolkappiyam[54] that all the eight kinds of marriage as mentioned in the Vedic literature like Brahmana, Prajapatya, Arsha, Daiva, Gandharva, Asura, Rakshasa, Paisacha were known to ancient Tamils. According to Tolkappiyam[55] there are three stages in the evolution of the institution of marriage in ancient Tamilakam. In the beginning men and women entered into family life out of mutual consent without the necessary intervention of elders or parents and without any rituals. In course of time, this system of marriage, known as kalavu, got corrupted and as a result, the wise men of the society formulated certain rules and rituals governing the institution of marriage, common to all the four classes. In the next stage differentiation in the ritual procedure came to be noticed especially between the top three castes and the last one. However, there is no dowry system in Sangam age and instead the bridegroom has to pay bride-price for procuring ornaments required for the bride[56]. Tolkappiyam[57] says that in an ideal marriage, man and woman should be equal to each other in beauty, attainments, wealth, manners, etc. If a difference between the two was unavoidable, then it is better that the man should be superior to woman. Thus, it seems that by the time of Tolkappiyam when arranged marriages became popular, then the method of selecting a bride involving this particular aspect shows, how the superiority of man in a family life is protected at the stage of marriage itself.

Ahananuru and Silappadikaram gives a glimpse into the development of marriage rituals in Tamilnadu between circa 3rd century A.D. to 5th century A.D. In Ahananuru[58] the ritual for marriage does not involve the participation of priest. Even the circumambulation of the fire-altar by the couple and tying of tali is not mentioned. However, by the time of Silappadikaram[59], while describing the marriage ceremony of Kovalan and Kannaki all the rituals became popular and the marriageable age of men and women seems to have become sixteen and twelve, as known with reference to the age of Kovalan and Kannaki respectively.

Regarding the type of dwelling units Purananuru[60] refers to the existence of usage of burnt bricks for the construction of houses, white washing of the walls with plaster called sudai and houses having more than one storey. Nedunalvadai[61] refers to storied houses having high entrance gates called Ongu nilai vayil. Pattinappalai[62] further refers to some houses having porticos, piazzas and open terrace on the top. All these may be true for those rich, affluent and royal households. The common people seem to have lived in small houses made of wattle-daub, clay or sun dried bricks with thatched roof[63]. Perumbanarruppadai[64] refer to seperate residential areas for the Brahmins (Andanar teru or Parppana Cheri) and the people belonging to the lower strata of the society (Paraiyar Cheri).

People took vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian food. Sangam literature refers to several crops of grains like barely, rice and wheat. Ahananuru[65] mentions food habits of different communities. It is known that the Maravar community after raiding the cows, slaughtered it as an offering to the spirit residing in the neem tree and partook of its cooked meat[66]. Rice of different varieties like Rajannam[67], Samba, etc., and millets seems to be the staple diet of the people. Various kinds of fruits and vegetables were also popular. Different milk products like ghee, skimmed milk, curd, butter were used. Preserved and dried chips were also in use. Puram[68] also mentions the practice of preparing pickles, known as urukai and varral. Food is normally served on plantain leaves[69] and they eat by sitting on floor. They also used large teak wood or Ambal leaves for taking food[70]. The usage of betel leaves (Verrilai or Adagu) after taking food was also popular. They were cosumed by rolling (tiraival) it after slaking it with lime derived from conch shells and adding areca nut (Adagukkai). Silappadikaram[71] mentions special class of people expert in rolling betel leaves called pasavar. Drinking toddy of various kinds mixed with mango juice, jackfruit juice and honey is also popular. Toddy is stored either in pipes of bamboo or pitcher. Reference is made of special places marked by prominent flags in the markets for the sale of toddy[72]. There are references to the intake of opium by nomadic classes[73].

Purananuru[74] mentions, about the means of transport, especially used by the trading communities, such as bullock-carts, boat (ambl), floating rafts (toni) and ships (kappal), etc. The large ships used for overseas trade had masts and sails were called as Pamaram and Poy. Timil[75] is another type of boat especially used for fishing.

Literatures like Narrinai, Ahananuru, Purananuru and Tolkappiyam, etc., give insight into the religious beliefs of the pre-Pallava period. Ahananuru[76], Purananuru[77], Pattinappalai[78] and Kalittogai[79] refer to the primitive practise of worshipping god in aniconic form as Kandu (wooden post), which was planted on a platform set up in the podiyil. Another such object is the rostrum of shark, which was worshiped as representing Varuna, by the fishing community in the Neital region[80]. From Tolkappiyam[81], it is learnt that people inhabiting different eco-zones worshiped different gods like Mayon (Mullai region), Seyon (Kurinchi region), Vendan (Marutam region), Korravai (Palai region) and Katalon or Varunan (Neital region).

Ahananuru[82] and Purananuru[83] also refer indirectly to Siva, describing his various features and exploits. In Puram 7 a shrine dedicated to Siva, worshipped by the Pandyan king Palyagasalai Mudukudumi Peruvaludi is mentioned. Further reference to Siva is found in Manimekalai[84], which mentions about the Kapalikas sect.

Muruga called variously as Seyon, Neduvel, Murugu was primarily worshipped as god of warfare[85]. He is described variously as the son of Korravai (the goddess of victory), Palayol (the oldest goddess), Kadukal or Kadukilal (the goddess who owns the forest) Aiyai (the mother) in Sangam literatures[86]. Narrinai[87] for the first time mentions Valli, the daughter of the Kuravas (a mountain tribe), as consort of Muruga and described Him as the one who has cock as the banner on his flag[88]. In Puram 55 He is mentioned as the presiding deity of Tiruchendur. Narrinai[89] and Ahananuru[90] refer to the ritualistic dancing known as Veriadal connected with the worship of Muruga. With regard to the mode of worshipping Muruga, Paripadal mentions that He was worshipped by the ruling elite and His entourage inside the temple, as an image having six heads with twelve-hands and outside the temple, the rural folk worshiped Him in the form of a spear, smeared with sandal paste and adorned with garlands and a red cloth. The spear was usually carried by the Velan, the priest and installed it below a Kadamba tree, sacred to Muruga. People prostrated before the spear and Kadamba tree, sacrificed goat and feast took place at the spot with plenty of food. Temple dedicated to Muruga was referred to in Silappadikaram as Verkottam[91].

Regarding the worship of Ganesa, a very hazy references is obtained from Puram[92], where the association of erukku leaves with the worship of gods, seem to hint at Ganesa, for whom the erukku or arkapatra leaves (Calotropis gaigantea) is a favorite item of worship. A near equivalent can be visualized in the form of Perumchadukkattu Bhutam, who is mentioned in Silappadikaram[93] as the demon on the crossroad of the city of Puhar holding a pasam or rope in its hand, punished the offenders, gave them difficulties and obstructions and protected those who behaved well. From Padirruppattu[94] and Silappadikaram[95], it is known that the Chera king Ilam Cheral Irumporai instituted the worship of the Chatukkattu Bhutam in Vanji. The worship of Chatukkattu Bhutam was accompanied by offering fermented toddy or honey. However it is to be mentioned that in spite of some similarities the Chatukkattu Bhutam had with Ganesa, there is no clear reference to Ganesa in Sangam literature.

Along with Siva, Vishnu is referred to as a great god[96]. There is also reference to the incarnations of Vishnu like Trivikrama[97] Rama[98], Parasurama[99], Balarama[100] and Krishna[101]. Purananuru[102] identifies Mayon (Vishnu) with Veyyon (the Sun god), bearing a flag with kite as the banner and nemi (disc) as weapon. The Trivikrama and Anantasayi forms of Vishnu are described in Perumbanarruppadai[103]. By the time of Paripadal (circa 5th century A.D. to 6th century A.D.), many forms and attributes of Vishnu are mentioned. Manimekalai[104] further refer to the Puranic legend of Vamana avatar and a passing reference to Bali is made in Tirukkural[105]. Silappadikaram mentions separate temples constructed to Vishnu[106] and Balarama (Vellainagarkottam)[107]. Not much is known regarding the status of worship of Brahma. He is referred in Narrinai[108], Purananuru[109], Kalittogai[110] and Tirumurugarruppadai[111] as the creator of the universe.

Among the goddesses reference is made in Ahananuru to Umaiyol/[112] (Parvati) and Kollippavai[113] (goddess of chastity). The Kuruntokai[114] and Padirruppattu[115] refer to Korravai as goddess of victory (Verrimadantai), dwelling in hilly areas with Her abode in the Vakai tree and holding sula as her weapon. Yet another goddess, described as a great war goddess living in forests, was called variously as Kanamar-selvi, Kadurai-kadavul, Tunangaiyan-selvi in literatures like Ahananuru[116], Kalittokai[117], Porunararruppadai[118], Perumbanarruppadai[119] and Tolkappiyam[120]. Silappadikaram121 gives an elaborate account of the cult and iconography of Durga, where she is called as Korravai–the sister of Mal (Vishnu) and consort of Siva and also refers to goddesses Lakshmi and Sarasvati. Manimekalai[121] especially mentions a temple for the goddess of learning at Madurai.

Other hilly goddesses like Suraramagalir and Kollippavai (a deity supposed to reside in the Kolli hills, Salem district) were also worshipped. The worship of Pattini (the Chaste Lady) was perhaps a very early institution and was perhaps an extension of the worship of a hero. But this seems to have become popular with Senguttuvan’s worship of Kannaki and it spread to distant places like Ceylon in the South and Malwa in the North[122].

Vedic sacrifices also became popular, especially among the ruling class. From Padirruppattu[123], it is known that the Chera king Perunjeral Irumporai performed Putrakameshti sacrifice. Purananuru[124] mentions that Mudukudumi Peruvaludi of the Pandyan family set up many sacrificial halls for the performance of Vedic sacrifices. It is known from Purananuru[125] that the Chola king Perunarkilli performed the sacrifice of Rajasuya and Asvamedha. Similarly Puram[126] refers to the many yajnas performed by Karikala.

Different elements of nature are worshipped as either gods themselves or as their residence. Narrinai[127] gives numerous references to the practice of offering food and flowers to spirits and their resting places are believed to be trees, forests and hills. Ahananuru refers to the one-wheeled chariot as the vehicle of Sun god[128]. It also mentions that the Maravars after returning from raiding the cattles, used to worship the spirit in the neem tree by sacrificing a fat cow and consuming it[129]. Tirumurugarruppadai[130] refers to Indra, Yama, Varuna and Soma (Kubera) as the guardians of the east, south, west and north and also refers to the 33 devas and 12 ganas. Seperate temples dedicated to the Kalpaka tree (amarartarukkottam), the Sun (uchchikkilankottam) and the moon (nilakkottam) are mentined in Silappadikaram[131].

Apart from the followers of brahmanical faith, there also existed Jainas, Ajvikas and Buddhists in this period. Regarding the popularity of Jainism, information is got from a number of inscriptions engraved near the Jaina rock-cut beds carved in several natural caverns in Tamil Nadu, datable palaeographically between 3rd century B.C. to 3rd century A.D[132]. The prevalence of Buddhism in pre-Pallava period is best revealed through the epic Manimekalai[133]. It mentions the construction of a Buddhist Vihara by the Chola Viceroy Ilam Killi ruling at Kanchi for the stay of Manimekalai at a place called Dharmadavana, where she also got constructed a chaitya with the footprints of Buddha installed in it. In the city of Puhar is mentioned the existence of Buddha-viharas and garden retreats for Jaina monks. Also the existence of a Buddhist chaitya is referred to in the city of Vanji[134]. Manimekalai[135] also refers to the existence of the Ajivika sect as well.

Reference to number of festivals is found in the Sangam literature. The harvest festival celebrated in the month of Tai known as Pongal/ is mentioned in Narrinai[136]. People also congregated on river banks, for worshipping the river goddess and took ceremonial baths on auspicious occasions[137]. Ahananuru contains reference to Kartikai[138] festival, which is mentioned as Peruvila and Panguni-Uttiram[139]. Festivals and feasts in honor of Varuna in the coastal area[140] and Muruga in Tirupparankunr/am[141] are also known. The festival of Kama in Madurai, as well as Korravai in rural areas accompanied with the Vettuvarai dance is mentioned in Silappadikaram[142]. Manimekalai[143] describes about the participation of the Chola king Nedumudi Killi in the festival held for twenty-eight days in honor of Indra at the capital city of Puhar in the month of Chitra. Tirukkural[144] mentions both daily or regular festivals (pusanai) and special annual festivals (sirappu). Apart from these various festivals, which served as a sort of religious and social congregation for the people, there are also several kinds of nonbu i.e. religious owes associated with domestic ceremony. Narrinai[145] narrates about a nonbu observed by the unmarried girls after bathing in cold water in the month of Tai. Ahananuru[146] mentions the Silambu kali nonbu i.e. anklet removing ceremony, which is associated with changing of the anklet worn by the girl on the occasion of her marriage. Puram 61 mentions about a custom called Vadakkiruttal, which is a kind of suicide with religious sanction. Tirumurugarruppadai[147] refers to fasting as a form of nonbu, which is observed for a month.

The deification of men who lost their life in battle or in dispute and women who sacrificed her life by committing sati=, were honoured and worshipped by erecting hero-stones and sati-stones respectively. The practice of erecting hero-stones on the place of death of a hero and worshipping it is more popular among the warrior classes like Maravar. They looked upon the departed spirit of the hero as the guarding of their property. Thus, Mangudi Kilar in his poem[148] says that there is no God worthy of adoration except the hero-stone.

Narrinai[149] and Ahananuru[150] refer to many superstitious beliefs and omens. The chirping of lizard is considered as a forecast of forthcoming events. The cawing of crow is sign for arrival of guests. The signing of Cuckkoo is an auspicious sign. The hooting of the owl is believed to carry the power of foreboding the future events. It is believed that the nature of one’s thought at the last moment of their death, has a consequence in the nature of life and events in the next birth[151]. From Puram 41 it is known that people had the belief that dreams will come true and some dreams are good and some are bad. Similar belief continued to exist in the time of Silappadikaram[152] as well. Totem (tali) is worn to ward off evil eye. Children were made to wear talisman with the belief that it will prevent them from the effects of evil spirits and illness[153]. Kalittogai[154] refer to the practice of fixing of auspicious days and hours within a day for beginning a new work or for starting a journey or for celebrating any function. From Silappadikaram[155] it is known that people had belief in goblins, which eat corpses. People had belief in astrology and consulted the Velan and the Kattuvichi, who are believed to possess the power of foretelling the events[156].

Practices akin to the Megalithic culture are also found in Sangam literatures. Narrinai[157], Padirruppattu[158] and Purananuru[159] refer to the practice of burying the dead in an urn (tali). Ahananuru[160] gives description of the various funerary stages and rituals, followed by the people like, burying the dead in a pit and planting of vertical stones over them. In case of the person died in heroic manner, then the stone slab also contains an epitaph engraved on it, consisting details of the circumstances that led to his death and his achievements, often accompanied by a carving of his image and erection of a leather shield and spear on the slab. The slab is then decorated with peacock feathers and it is worshipped by washing the images with water, smearing it with turmeric paste, offering garlands of Karandai flowers, toddy extracted from paddy and sacrificing of lambs. Purananuru[161] also refers to the practice of placing the dead body on a bed of Kusa grass and offering rice balls known as perumchoru. Reference is also made to the method of cremating the dead[162]. There is also another custom of exposing the dead body to the natural elements and then collecting the skeletal remains for burial as found in Tolkappiyam[163]. In this case, also stone (nadukal) is erected over the burial, followed by offering of food and flowers, accompanied with song and dance in praise of the dead person. Manimekalai[164], while describing a cemetery called Chakravalakkottam in Puhar, refers to the different types of burial customs, which prevailed in those times, like cremation (suduvor), exposing the dead (Iduvor), inhumation into pits (todu-kuli-paduppor), cists (tal-vayin-adaippor) and urns (taliyir-kavippor).

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

The chronology of this literature is still under debate, but generally dated between 300 B.C. to 300 A.D. It is classified under two groups viz., Ettuttogai and Pattuppattu. Of these the former comprises in chronological order Narrinai, Kuruntogai, Aingurunuru, Ahananuru, Patirruppattu, Purananuru, Kalittogai and Paripadal (the last two are considered to be of late period). The Pattuppattu are Tirumurugarruppadai, Porunararruppadai, Chirupanarruppadai, Perumpanarruppadai, Mullaippattu, Maduraikkanchi, Nedunalvadai, Kurinchippattu, Pattinappalai and Malaipatukatam. These poems are systematically collected into anthologies, with invocatory verses and colophons between 7th and 8th centuries A.D., vide R. Champakalakshmi, Trade, Ideology and Urbanization, South India 300 B.C. to A.D. 1300, Delhi, 1996, pp. 175–176.

[2]:

Tolkappiyam, Porulatikaram 1, 14, 20, 21, 44, 46, 313 and 497.

[3]:

Narrinai, nos 4, 138 and 331

[4]:

Ibid., no. 12

[5]:

Ibid., nos. 133, 153 and 363

[6]:

Puram no. 224.

[7]:

Ibid., nos. 13, 42.

[8]:

Ibid., no. 35.

[9]:

Ibid., nos. 263.

[10]:

Ibid., nos. 352.

[11]:

Ibid., no. 228

[12]:

Ibid., no. 108

[13]:

Ibid., no. 28.

[14]:

Ibid., no. 335

[15]:

Ibid., no. 36

[16]:

Ibid., nos. 13, 42.

[17]:

Maduraikkanchi, no. 144.

[18]:

Silappadikaram, Indiravilavureduttakadai, ll. 24 -58

[19]:

Natana Kasinathan, “Pulankurichchi Inscription–A Relook”, in Seminar on Archaeology, vol. 2, Madras, 1983, pp. 157–165.

[20]:

Nakkirar was a dealer in bangles made of shell, Aham 24.

[21]:

Silappadikaram, Purancheriiruttakadai, ll. 38, 39.

[22]:

Patir/ruppattu 7 -2.

[23]:

Puram no. 305

[24]:

Ibid., no. 83

[25]:

Pattinappalai, no. 76

[26]:

Tolkappiyam, Porulatikaram 32 and 142, 615, 616, 622, 625, 626, 632 and 635.

[27]:

Sutra 627.

[28]:

Some of the great kings of the Sangam age like Karikala married among the Vellalas, vide S. Sundararajan, Ancient Tamil Country –It’s Social and Economic Structure, Delhi 1991, pp. 140–141.

[29]:

N. Subrahmaniam, Sangam Polity –the Administration and the Social life of the Sangam Tamils, Udumalpet, 1996, 3rd ed., pp. 280, 300–301.

[30]:

Puram nos. 67 and 198.

[31]:

Ibid., no. 170.

[32]:

Ibid., no. 82.

[33]:

Kalittogai, no. 84, ll. 26, 27

[34]:

Sutra 25.

[35]:

Kuruntogai, no. 167

[36]:

Puram no. 9.

[37]:

Ibid., 336–356, Also Manimekalai, chapter XVI, Atirai pichchai idda kadai, ll. 23 to 44

[38]:

Kalittogai, no. 41.

[39]:

Ibid., no. 9.

[40]:

Poruladikaram, 99

[41]:

Sutra 37

[42]:

Porulatikaram, 187

[43]:

Puram 25, 62, 63, 246, 247, 256 and 299

[44]:

Narrinai, nos. 30, 100, 225, 260, 300, 320, 340, 350, 360 and 380.

[45]:

Aham, nos. 6, 26, 56, 76, 96, 206, 326, 336, 346, 376, 396, etc.

[46]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter XIV, Urkankadai, ll. 146–167.

[47]:

Manimekalai, Chapter XXVIII, Kachchimanagar pukka kadai, l. 45

[48]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter X, Nadukankadai, ll. 32ff.

[49]:

Indeed Manimekalai herself embraces the Buddhist faith and gets initiation as a nun under the mentorship of the Buddhist sage Aravana Adigal. (Manimekalai, Chapter XXIX, Tavittiram Punndu Tarumam Kedda Katai).

[50]:

Manimekalai, Chapter III, Malarvanam pukka kadai, ll. 23 -25

[51]:

Ibid., Chapter XIII, Aputtiran tiram arivitta kadai, l. 6

[52]:

Ibid., Chapter XIII, Aputtiran tiram arivitta kadai, 55

[53]:

Puram no. 336–356

[54]:

Porulatikaram 92

[55]:

Tolkappiyam, Sutra 39-43

[56]:

Aham no. 90, 280

[57]:

Porulatikaram, 93.

[58]:

Description of marriage ceremony can be found in Aham nos. 66, 86, 136, 221, 349 and 369

[59]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter I, Mangalavalttuppadal, ll. 20–39 and 45–68.

[60]:

Puram nos. 53, 67, 221, 228, 349, 369, 370, 378, 390 and 397

[61]:

Nedunalvadai, l. 88

[62]:

Pattinappalai, ll. 140ff

[63]:

Puram no. 120.

[64]:

Perumbanarruppadai, nos. 298–301.

[65]:

Aham, nos. 12, 37, 60, 105-10, 172, 196, 207, 216, 284, 311, 340, 348, 393 and 394.

[66]:

Ibid., 309

[67]:

It is a special variety of rice mentioned in Perumbanarruppadai

[68]:

Puram, no. 386

[69]:

Narrinai no. 120

[70]:

Aham no. 107, 196 and 311

[71]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter XVI, Kolaikkalakkadai, ll. 54–55.

[72]:

Padirruppattu: 60

[73]:

Puram no. 384

[74]:

Puram nos. 13, 30, 90, 102, 192, 264, 343, 387

[75]:

Narrinai no. 111, Aham no. 350

[76]:

Aham, no. 287.

[77]:

Puram, no. 52.

[78]:

Pattinappalai, nos. 246–249

[79]:

Kalittogai, no. 120.

[80]:

Pattinappalai, nos. 83–89

[81]:

Tol. Porulatikaram, 5

[82]:

Aham, nos. 83–89

[83]:

Puram no. 1

[84]:

Manimekalai, Chapter VI, Chakravalakkottam uraitta kadai

[85]:

Aham no. 1

[86]:

N. Vanamamalai, Skanda—Muruga, South Indian Studies –II. Madras, 1979, p. 14.

[87]:

Narrinai, No. 82

[88]:

Aham no. 149

[89]:

Narrinai, nos. 173, 258 and 288

[90]:

Aham, Nos. 22, 242

[91]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter IX, Kanattiramuraittakadai ll. 5–15.

[92]:

Puram, no. 106.

[93]:

Silappadikaram, Indiravilavureduttadakadai, ll. 128 -138; Kadaladukadai, ll. 1–13.

[94]:

9th pattupadigam

[95]:

Silappadikaram, Chaper XXVIII, Nadukarkadai, ll. 147–148.

[96]:

Aham no. 360

[97]:

Mullaippattu ll. 1–3

[98]:

Aham no. 70

[99]:

Ibid., nos. 70 and 220

[100]:

Puram no. 56

[101]:

Aham no. 59

[102]:

Puram, nos. 46 and 58

[103]:

Perumbanarruppadai, ll. 29–31 and 371–73

[104]:

Manimekalai, Chapter XIX, Chiraikkottam Arakkottam Akkiya kadai, ll. 51–52

[105]:

Tirukkural, 61.

[106]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter X, Nadukankadai, ll. 5–14; Chapter V, Indiravilavureduttakadai, ll. 169 -188

[107]:

Ibid., Chapter IX, Kanattiramuraittakadai, ll. 5–15.

[108]:

Narrinai, no. 240

[109]:

Puram no. 194

[110]:

Kalittogai, no. 1

[111]:

Tirumurugarruppadai, 160–163

[112]:

Aham, Invocatory verse.

[113]:

Ibid., nos. 62, 157, 209

[114]:

Kuruntokai, no. 218

[115]:

Padirruppattu, no. 66

[116]:

Aham, no. 345

[117]:

Kalittogai, no. 89

[118]:

Porunararruppadai, l. 52

[119]:

Perumbanarruppadai, l. 459

[120]:

Sutra 12.

[121]:

Manimekalai, Chapter V, Manimekala teivam vantu tonriya kadai and Chapter XIII, Aputtiran tiram arivitta kadai

[122]:

Silappadikaram, Varantarukadai, ll. 155–164.

[123]:

Padirruppattu, no. 74

[124]:

Puram, Nos. 6, 9, 12, 15, 64

[125]:

Ibid., nos. 16 and125

[126]:

Ibid., no. 224

[127]:

Narrinai, nos. 73, 192, 201, 251, 259, 301, 319, 343, 358, 398

[128]:

Aham no. 360

[129]:

Aham, no. 309

[130]:

Tirumurugarruppadai, ll. 160 -161

[131]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter IX, Kanattiramuraittakadai, ll. 5–15.

[132]:

For example, those are found at several places in Madurai district like Alagarmalai (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1908, no. 334; 1910, nos. 70-79; 1963 -64, no. B 244 -245), Arittipatti (Journal of Indian History, vol. XLIX, nos. 145–147, pp. 229–32), Karungalakkudi (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1911, no. 561), Kilavalavu (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1903, no. 135), Konkarpuliyankulam (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1910, no. 55-57), Mangulam (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1906, nos. 460 -465; 1963 -64, no. 242), Tirupparankunram (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1951 -52, nos. 140 -142), Vikkiramangalam (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1926, nos. 621 -623), Sittannavasal (Pudukkottai district, Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1914, no. 388–A), Marukaltalai (Tirunelveli district, Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1906, no. 407), datable to 2nd -1st century B.C., Jambai (Tirukkoilur taluk) datable to 1st century A.D., Muttuppatti (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1910, nos. 58 -60), datable to 1st -2nd century A.D., Kurralam (Tirunelveli district, Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1912, no. 25), datable to 3rd century A.D., Arachalur (Erode district, Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1961 -62, nos. 280 -282), Pugalur (Tiruchirappalli district, Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1927 -28, nos. 341 -346, 349; 1963 -64, nos. 296 -297), TiruchirappallI (Annual Report on Indian Epigraphy 1937- 38, no. 139), datable to 3rd -4th century A.D.

[133]:

Manimekalai, Chapter XXVIII, Kaccimanakar pukka kadai, ll. 87 ff.

[134]:

Ibid.

[135]:

Manimekalai, Chapter XXVII, Samayakkanakkar tantiram ketta kadai, ll. 78 ff.

[136]:

Narrinai, No. 22

[137]:

Kuruntogai: 295

[138]:

Aham nos. 11, 141 and 185

[139]:

Ibid., no. 137

[140]:

Puram no. 9

[141]:

Pattinappalai, 142–158

[142]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter V, Indiravilavureduttakadai, ll. 64–65; Chapter VI, Kadaladukadai; ll. 44–51; Chapter XIV, Urkankadai, ll. 110–111

[143]:

Manimekalai, Chapter I, Vilavarai kadai

[144]:

Tirukkural, no. 18

[145]:

Narrinai, no. 80

[146]:

Aham, nos. 315, 369, 385.

[147]:

Tirumurugarruppadai, 130–131

[148]:

Puram no. 315

[149]:

Narrinai, nos. 98, 169, 246, 333, 367

[150]:

Aham, nos. 9, 19, 88, 207, 289, 351, 387

[151]:

Kuruntogai, no. 57

[152]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter XV, Adaikkalakkadai ll. 95–106.

[153]:

Puram no. 77

[154]:

Kalittogai, no. 5

[155]:

Silappadikaram, Chapter IX, Kanattiramuraittakadai ll. 16–35.

[156]:

N. Subrahmaniam, op.cit., pp. 388.

[157]:

Narrinai, no. 271.

[158]:

Padirruppattu, no. 44.

[159]:

Puram, nos. 228, 238, 364.

[160]:

Aham nos. 35, 53, 67, 131 and 269

[161]:

Puram nos. 228, 238, 256

[162]:

Puram no. 239

[163]:

Porulatikaram 2, 60

[164]:

Suduvor-iduvor-todu kulippaduppor Talvayinadaippor-taliyirkavippor (Chapter VI, ll. 66 -67).

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