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Manimekalai - one of the masterpieces of Tamil literature


Posted Date: 10-Jun-2008  Last Updated:   Category: Education    
Author: Member Level: Gold    Points: 1



Manimekalai , written by Seethalai Saathanar, is one of the masterpieces of Tamil literature and is considered as one of the five great epics of Tamil literature. Manimekalai is a sequel to Silapathikaram and tells the story of the daughter of Kovalan and Madhavi. Manimekalai is Buddhist by religion.

Story of Manimekalai
As a continuation of Silappatikaram ,this epic describes how Manimekalai, the daughter of Kovalan and Madhavi, takes up social service as the primary aim of her life and how she sacrifices her entire life for the same cause.

Manimekalai is set in both Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka. The story runs as follows. Manimekalai is on the verge of marrying a prince, when she is abducted and taken to an island "Manipallava Theevu" by her fairy God Mother known as "Manimegala Theivam". There she comes across "Arughar" (also known as Budha) and she acquires the enchanted "aaputhiran kai amutha surabhi" - a cornucopia bowl. She uses this bowl to feed "Kayasandigai" (first in line), a cursed Yaksha (fairy) who is suffering from "Yaanai(Elephant) - Thee(Fire)" disease - an eating disorder caused due to excessive desire to eat. After this, Manimekalai is brought back to Tamil Nadu, where she uses her bowl to feed the needy.


Origin of the name Seethalai
The poet's name 'Seethalai' has an interesting origin. During the early days, Tamil literature was written on palm leaves using an iron pen which resembled a long nail. The poet Saathanar was hard on himself, that whenever he made a mistake, he would punish himself by poking his head with the writing instrument. Poking his head with the nail-like writing instrument, led to festering wounds and sometimes pus started forming. The Tamil word for pus is pronounced "See." The Tamil word for head is "Thalai." Therefore Seetalai literally means pus-head.


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Responses to "Manimekalai - one of the masterpieces of Tamil literature"
Author: Lenin    10 Jun 2008Member Level: Gold   Points : 2
hi u r posting the masterpices of tamil literature. be proud


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