Monthly Archives: November 2012

Where the epic was written

நடையின்நின்று உயர் நாயகன் தோற்றத்தின்
இடை நிகழ்ந்த இராமாவதாரப் பேர்த்
தொடை நிரம்பிய தோம் அறு மாக்கதை
சடையன் வெண்ணெய்நல்லூர்வயின் தந்ததே

Of the virtuous Vishnu’s avatars
the middle one called Ramavatar,
as faultess verse filled epic
was written in Sadayan’s Vennai Nallur.
Kamban’s patron was Sadayappan Vallal of Thiru Vennai Nallur village. Kamban states that this epic was written by him in his Patron’s village. Of Vishnu’s avatars, Rama comes between Parasurama and Balarama. Hence Kamban says the middle one (இடை நிகழ்ந்த).

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The Original Source

தேவ பாடையின் இக் கதை செய்தவர்
மூவர் ஆனவர் தம் உளும் முந்திய
நாவினார் உரையின்படி நான் தமிழ்ப்
பாவினால் இது உணர்த்திய பண்பு அரோ.

In God’s language this epic

has been written by three;

Of them the foremost is whom

I follow to sing this in Tamil

In Kamban’s time there were three versions of Ramayana. One written by Valmiki, second Yoga Vaishta as told to Rama by Sage Vasisht, third Adhyatma Ramayana as written by Sage Vyasa. Kamban says of the three he follows the first, Valmiki Ramayana as the base of his epic.

There are more than three hundred versions of Ramayana. You can read this wiki for details. Also, you can read this 48 page artilce by AK Ramanujan if you want to explore further the various versions of Ramayana.

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