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Sri Nakkeera ThEva Naayanar’s

Every lover of Muruga chants the idyll of Thirumurugaatrruppadai, sung by Nakkira Deva Nayanar,
the Poet Laureate of the Third Academy of Tamil letters, which scholars attribute as having flourished from the third century B.C. to the second century A.D. It is a timeless piece of artistic creation, a work of exquisite literary art and apart from its religious value stands out in the literature of the world as a masterpiece of flawless poetry. Nakkirar may be called in the ancient grammarian, Tolkappiyar’s phrase, NiraiMozhi Māntar, men who attain mystic powers of utterance by their penance.

Tirumurugarrupadai is a revealing text about the popular religion of the Tamils in the classical age. It is one of the earliest and most devotional of the poems on God Muruga—hailed as the Supreme Guardian Deity of the Dravida people, acclaimed also as the Son of Siva, the immanent
word that manifested as Being. In one of his less known poems called Kailaipāti Kāllatipati Antādi, Nakkirar sang thus:

“The word and its import, the body and the soul, Fragrance and flower, flawless like these, Our Lord of Kailasa Hills too difficult to reach, Stands He immanent in all.”

Nakkirar was the son of a reputed teacher at Madurai called Kanakāyanar and was a distinguished poet of the Third Academy, which had its seat in the capital city of Madura, Ptolemy’s “royal Modura Pondion”. He was a contemporary of the Pandyan King Mudattitumaran of the Third Academy of Tamil letters. His age is believed to be between the first and second Century A.D. He wrote a learned commentary on the well-known work entitled Irayanār Ahaporul. Vankya Sudamani Pāndyan offered a handsome donation of gold to the poet who would compose the best poem according to the highest standards of literary composition prevailing at that time. Dharmi, a lowly poet, invoked divine aid and submitted his poem, which was selected for the award. However, Nakkirar found fault with a particular line in that poem and tradition avows that even when Siva appeared and supported the correctness of Dharmi’s thought and diction, Nakkirar persistently refuted it. He suffered the consequence of his arrogance and got rid of his incurable
ailment after undertaking a pilgrimage to Mount Kailasa.

It was on his way to Kailasa that he encountered the demon Ayakrivan and was captured by him and put in a cave along with 999 men of piety who had been made captives by this bhuta who wanted to perform a unique sacrifice of one thousand men in order to fulfill his penance. When Nakkirar arrived in the cave, his fellow captives were seized with grief as his capture spelt doom for all of them. Tradition declared that Nakkirar composed this illustrious poem on Muruga during this crisis, and invoked the Lord to guide him and also save his fellow captives from the impending danger. The place of captivity was a mountainous cave on the top of Tirupparankunram, and Nakkirar in the opening lines of the poem Tirumurugārrupadai extols its praise, as the holy abode of Muruga. When the poet finished his poem of praise, Lord Muruga appeared and killed the demon with his powerful Lance and rescued the thousand men:

“Kunram erinthāy! Kuraikadalit Sūrthadinthāy!
Pūnthalaya Pūthap Porupadaiyāy! Enrum
Elayāy- Alagiāy! Erūrnthān Erēy!
Uiaiyāy en ullathu uray.
Kunram Erinthathuvum Kunrapōr Seythathuvum
Antrangu Amararidar Thīrthathuvum—Intrenaik
Kaividā nintrathuvum Katpothumpit Kāthathuvum
Meyvidā Vīrankai Vel.
(Thirumurugaatruppadai Venba 1-2)

He was also the author of Tiruvingoimālai Elupathu, Tiruvālanjuli Mummanikovai, Peruntēvap Parani, Tiruvelu- Kūtirukkai, Pōtri Kalivenba, Tirukannappatēvar Tirumaram and Nāladi Nāropatu. His poems are included in the earliest anthologies of Tamil poetry known as Narrinai, Kurruntokai, Ahanānūru and Puranānūru. His son Kiravi Korranār composed the famous poem on nature called Nedunalvādai, which is also included in the above anthology of the Third Academy of letters, which marked the glorious epoch of Tamil civilisation.

Tirumurugārrupadai is the masterpiece of Nakkirar. It is the first idyll in the Pattuppāttu consisting of ten idylls which enjoyed popular esteem as marking the high watermark of Tamil poetry in the Third Academy of letters. Besides this, Tirumurugārrupadai is unique in that it is also included in the collection of the sacred Saiva religious poetry known as the eleventh Tirumurai. In this text, the author is exalted as Nakkira Deva Nayanar, Saint Nakkirar. The purport of the author is brought out in one of the closing stanzas of the poem itself:

‘In the face of fear, His face of comfort shows!
In the fierce battlefield, ‘fear not’, His Lance shows!
Think of Him once, twice He shows!
To those who chant His Name Muruga!’
((Thirumurugaatruppadai Venba 6)

This poem enjoys great popularity as a timeless work of art, and essentially it is the work of a religious mind, who drew his inspiration from the distinct religious tradition of his land and age. It is believed to be efficacious in that it acts as a healing balm on those who recite it, and even today, we find this poem sung with piety by many a devotee of Muruga.


ulakam uvappa valanErpu thiritharu
Tirupparangkunram - The Auspicious Hill Supreme - The World (1) delights as he rises on its right (2) and goes wandering
palarpukal nyaayiRu kataRkaN taaang
So many people praise the Sun (3) as if seen in the sea
kOvaRa imaikkunj sENviLang kaviroLi
Ceaselessly their eyelids flutter from his immaculate light shining from so far off.
uRunarth thaangiya mathanutai nOnRaat
Those who approach have his sustaining strength as they strive to reach his feet.(4)
seRunarth thEyththa selluRal thatakkai 5
His hand, broad as a cloud, wipes out all enemies. (5)

maRuvil kaRpin vaaNuthal kaNavan
Husband of her of radiant brow and stainless chastity.
kaarkON mukantha kamanjsUn maamalai
A cloud, pregnant and immaculate, has scooped up the sea. (6)
vaaLpOl visumpin vaLLuRai sithaRith
The Shining Ones (7) pierce the sky that is sprinkling innumerable droplets.
thalaippeyal thalaiiya thaNNaRung kaanath
The first rain of the season pours down upon the forest, fragrant and cool.
thiruLpatap pothuLiya paraaarai maraaath 10
And the stout-trunked Sengadambu tree (8) flourishes in the gathering dark.

thuruLpUn thandaar puraLum maarpinan
While the Stout-chested Ones cool garland sways with blossoms shaped like [chariot] wheels. maalvarai nivantha sENuyar veRpiR
The frightful bamboo towers, grown high as mountains unassailable.
kiNkiNi kavai aya oNsenj seeRatik
Tinkling anklets grasp their bright and rosy feet, so delicate.
kaNaikkaal vaangiya nusuppiR paNaithOt
Their sumptuous legs, curving hips, and shoulders like bamboo.
kOpath thanna thOyaap pUnthukiR 15
Their un-dyed satins, a red-backed beetles similitude.

palkaasu niraiththa silkaal alkuR
They have many coins aligned in rows about their waists.
kaipunain thiyatrraak kavinpeRu vanappin
The beauty which they have received is a loveliness not fashioned by any hand.
naavalotu peyariya polampunai avirilais
Dazzling ornaments crafted of the gold named [for its refinement]. (9)
sENikanthu viLangunj seyirtheer mEnith
Devoid of stain, their bodies' brilliance extends beyond distant places.
thuNaiyOr yntha iNaiyee rOthis 20
Their attendants have trussed up their hair, still moist,

seng kaal vedchis seeRithal itaiyitupu
Placing tiny petals of the red-stemmed Vedchi between.
painthaat kuvaLaith thUvithal kiLLith
And have plucked the pure petals of the green-stemmed Kuvalai (10),
theyva uththiyotu valampuri vayinvaiththuth
[They then] wind them to the right, with their head ornaments (11) [intertwined].
thilakan thaiiya thEngamal thirunuthan
The Kum-kum set on their beautiful brows exudes sweetness,
makarap pakuvaay thaalamaN NuRuththuth 25
Accentuated below by [hairpins shaped-like] wide-mouthed sharks.

thuvara mutiththa thukaLaRu muchip
Their coiled hair now immaculate and complete.
perunthaN saNpakanj sEreeik karunthakat
They've placed the Sanpakam blossom, cool and rare, in their hair like black sheets of metal [two dark leaves]
tuLaippU maruthin oLLiNar attik
Surrounding an Ulai flower. Set there, a bright bunch of blossoms from the Marutu tree.
kiLaikkavin Relutharu keelneers selvarum
And they have bound branches of beautiful red-buds, wet with dew,
piNaippuRu piNaiyal vaLaiith thuNaiththaka 30
Into a garland, arranged to encircle their two [twisted locks].

vaNkaathu niRaintha pindi ondhaLir
Their sumptuous ears filled with bright sprouting leaves of Ashoka.
nuNpUN akan thiLaippath thiNkaal
Their breasts, adorned to extreme, with delicate jewels firm and fair,
natunguRa turinjsiya pUngElth thEyvai
Odoriferous sandal ground to a paste, fragrant and bright as a blossom.
thEngamal maruthiNar katuppuk kOngin
Their Marutu flowers oozing honey, like the tight-petaled buds of Kongki.
kuvimukil iLamulaik kotti virimalar 35
Young breasts, smeared in abundance, with full blown

vEngai nundaa thappip kaaNvara
Blossoms of Vaengai, and fine pollen spread round, so lovely.
veLLiR kuRumuRi kiLLupu theRiyaak
They pluck small sprouts of the Vila tree and sprinkle them [on each other].
kOli Ongiya venRatu viRaRkoti
They hoist high the flag of the valorous cock who conquers [its enemies] and destroys [its foes]. vaaliya po¢then REththip palarutan
They greet all the others saying, 'Long life to you!'
seerthikal silampakanj silampap paatis 40
And there abides an unmatched mountain resounding, (12) with the echo of their songs.

sUrara makaLir tunj sOlai
The frightful demoness plays in the garden,
manthiyum aRiyaa maranpayil atukkaththus
A mountain range, with trees so dense, the she-monkey (13) can't find her way. (14)
surumpu musaas sutarppUng kaanthat
The bees [hover] in silence (15) about the luminescent Kantal in bloom (16)
perunthaN kaNNi milaintha senniyan
On the large cool garland adorning his head.
paarmuthir panikkatal kalangavuL pukkus 45
He enters the ancient earth, the icy sea and they tremble.

sUrmuthal thatintha sutarilai netuvEl
He severed the root of the demon Sur with his leaf-shaped spear, long and flaming.
ulaRiya kathuppiR piRalpaR pElvaays
[That demoness] Her dry locks of hair, and mouth like a chest, with pandemonious fangs sulalvilip pasungat sUrththa nOkkiR
She rolls her green eyes, and is terrifying to see.
kalalkat kUkaiyOtu katumpaampu thUngap
As an eye-popping owl and venomous snake hang in her ears.
perumulai alaikkung kaathiR piNarmOt 50
Swaying along with her gargantuan breasts and her jagged gut.

turukelu selavin anjsuvaru pEymakaL
Her strut is so very frightening; dreadful is her coming. This she-vampire
kuruthi tiya kUrugirk kotuviraR
Blood stains the sharp nails of her twisted fingers
kandhot tunda kalimutaik karunthalai
That dig out the eyes to eat from a rancid black head, overwhelmingly foul.
ondotith thatakkaiyin Enthi veruvara
She holds it in her broad hand wearing bangles so bright.
venRatu viRaRkaLam paatiththOL peyaraa 55
And she frightfully sings mighty battlefield songs of conquest and destruction.

niNanthin vaayaL thuNangai thUnga
And she, with that mouth, wiggles her shoulders and munches on corpses, performing her Tunngai dance (17).
irupE kuruvin orupE riyaakkai
Two large beings in one massive body, (18)
aRuvERu vakaiyin anjsuvara mandi
Terrified six different units when [the demon Sur] approached.
avuNar nalvalam atangak kaviliNar
But he spoiled these demons' great conquest.
maamuthal thatintha maRuvil kotrrath 60
He hacked at the root of their mango tree where blossoms are hung in profusion. His victory was flawless.

theyyaa nallisais sevvER sEey
And his fine glory is boundless, the Son with the spear that is red.
sEvati patarunj semmal uLLamotu
By approaching his ruddy feet with magnanimous mind
nalampuri koLkaip pulampurin thuRaiyum
One rightly animates the wise sayings of old Leave your homeland. Stay somewhere else.
selavunee nayanthanai yaayiR palavutan
If you have the desire to go on pilgrimage, so many virtues, And your own heart's dearest desire will be achieved.
nannar nenjsath thinnasai vaayppa 65
You'll get it instantly! The noblest virtues are yours!

innE peRuthinee munniya vinaiyE
Hungering for war, he hoists his tall flag way up high.
seRuppukan Retuththa sENuyar netungoti
And hangs from it dolls and a ball of coiled twine. (19)
varippunai panthotu paavai thUngap
He destroys the war-makers. For few battles are waged at the gates [of fair Madurai].
porunarth thEyththa pOraru vaayil
In its mischiefless markets Lakshmiís enthroned in majesty,
thiruveeR Riruntha theethutheer niyamaththu 70
Along its wide boulevards there are balconies a plenty, (20) near Madurai's western gate.

maatamali maRukiR kUtaR kutavayin
In broad fields of black mud it opens and unfolds
irunjsER Rakalvayal virinthuvaay avilntha
The prickly-stemmed lotus that sleeps until dawn.
muttaaL thaamaraith thunjsi vaikaRaik
Buzzing about honey-scented Neytal blossoms.
katkamal neythal Uthi eRpatak
Where the mountain spring flowers rouse one's desire as they blossom like eyes in the morning. (21)
kaNpOl malarntha kaamar sunaimalar 75
That glorious swarm of comely-winged bees drone on.

anjsiRai vandin nyarikkaNam olikkum
It's at Kunram's hill, There's where he abides; and not only there
kunRamarn thuRaithalum uriyan athaa anRu.
[His elephant], Its forehead scarred deep by the attack of his sharp-tipped [goad].

2. thirucheeralaivaay - thiruchenthUr

Thirucchiiralaivaay The Sacred Ocean of Import (Tiruchendur)
vainnuthi porutha vatuvaal varinuthal
With a garland that never wilts and headpiece swaying.
vaataa maalai Otaiyotu thuyalvarap
Bells hang from its side, intermittently chiming, as it quickly saunters on.
patumaNi irattu marungiR katunataik 80
Its might, rarely overcome, like the Lord of Death.

kUtrrath thanna maatrraru moympiR
And he climbs upon that elephant like the voracious wind.
kaalkiLarn thanna vElam mElkoN
Of five different parts (22) crafted by the smith, refined and complete:
taivE RuruviR seyvinai mutrriya
The brilliance of this crown offsets the great beauty of its gems.
mutiyotu viLangiya muraNmiku thirumaNi
Adorning his head, as it flickers like lightening.
minnuRal imaippiR sennip poRpa 85
Effulgence hangs there, swaying as earrings wrought of gold.

nakaithaalpu thuyalvaru um vakaiyamai polangulai
With that kind of distant radiance like the moon shining bright
sENviLang kiyaRkai vaanmathi kavaii
Or with the luster of the relentless stars shimmering [in the night].
akalaa meenin avirvana ilaippath
For the accomplished ones who perform their vows free of suffering,
thaavil koLkaith thantholil mutimaar
His brightly colored faces appear directly in their minds.
mannOr pelutharu vaaNiRa mukanE 90
As a brilliance without blemish upon this world of utter darkness

maayiruL nyaalam maRuvinRi viLangap
Generating many rays of light is One Face. And One Face
palkathir virinthan Rorumukam orumukam
Poised as sweet demeanor and praised by those with longing
rvalar Eththa amarnthini tholukik
Is pleased by their love and confers to them, their boons. One face
kaathalin uvanthu varangotuth thanRE orumukam
Regards the mantric code of the unfailing tradition
manthira vithiyin marapuLi valaa a 95
With its priestly sacrifices which it remembers. One Face

anthaNar vELviyOrk kummE orumukam
Comes to draw out meanings that were overlooked, illuminating the [four] directions just like the moon. One face
enjsiya poruLkaLai EmuRa naatith
Destroys the enemy, sours all equanimity, (23)
thingaL pOlath thisaiviLak kummE orumukam
Longs to enter the field with a wrathful heart. One Face
seRunarth thEyththus selsamam murukkik
With an innocent hill-tribe girl whose got curves like a vine
karuvukoL nenjsamotu kaLamvEt tanRE orumukam 100
With that damsel With Valli is laughing and smiling.

kuRavar matamakaL kotipOl nusuppin
Just like that, those faces, 3 X 2, tend to be.
matavaral vaLLiyotu nakaiyamarn thanRE ngam
He's got a garland that hangs low on his chest strong and lovely
mUviru mukanum muRainavin Rolukalin
With reddish lines defined and bending, his might, emits a sparkling.
ran thaalntha ampakattu maarpiR
His fame, found in plenty. His shoulders, they are curving.
sempoRi vaangiya moympiR sutarvitupu 105
Held high [in blessing] for those who move across the sky

vaNpukal niRainthu vasinthuvaangu nimirthOLa
Is One Hand. And One Hand is set upon his hip.
viNselan marapin aiyark kEnthiya thorugai
And One Hand is resting on his thigh, adorned so fine.
ukkanj sErththiya thorugai
One Hand operates the goad. And Two Hands
nalampeRu kalingaththuk kuRanginmisai asaiiya thorugai
Hold his fine black shield and spins his spear to the right. One Hand
angusang katavaa orugai irugai 110
Is placed above his chest just so. And One Hand

aiyiru vattamo teqkuvalan thirippa orugai
Is beautiful as it touches his garland. One Hand,
maarpotu viLanga orugai
It's bracelets fall below, while raised up high its whirling round. One Hand
thaarotu poliya orugai
Rings a bell that's singing sweetly. One Hand
keelveel thotiyotu meemisaik kotpa orugai
Makes the sky of blue shower drops of plenty. And One Hand
paatin patumaNi iratta orugai 115
Adorns the divine bride of the heavens with her wedding garland.

neeniRa visumpin malithuLi poliya orugai
Just like that...those twelve hands tend to act.
vaanara makaLirkku vathuvai sU tta vaangap
On high many instruments resounding. Strong and seasoned horns are playing with its pitch that's swelling. And white
conch shells are sounding
panniru kaiyum paaRpata iyatrri
As his mighty war-drum thunders inspiring fear.
antharap palliyang kaRangath thindhaal
His densely feathered peacock and flag of conquest sing out,
vayirelun thisaippa vaalvaLai nyaala 120
And he figures that the sky will be the quickest route to take. World renowned and towering high is its sublime glory.

uranthalaik konda urumiti murasamotu
Thus, his going to Alaivay with its changeless quality. And not only there
palpoRi manjney velkoti akava
They whose dress is of stitched bark And grand are
visumpaa Raaka viraiselan munni
They whose pure white hair... spirals to the right, like conch shells.
ulakam pukalntha Onguyar vilucheer
They who are devoid of blemish and have a form that shimmers, with a deer's
alaivaay s sERalum nilaiiya paNpE athaa anRu 125
hide that covers a breast that's cast aside it's food.

3. thiruvaavinankudi - palani

The Fine and Auspicious Settlement of Avi
seerai thaiiya utukkaiyar seerotu
They whose bodies are like skeletons that have leapt up to wander. At auspicious times...
valampuri puraiyum vaanarai mutiyinar
They won't eat for many days. Rancor
maasaRa imaikkum uruvinar maanin
and wrath purged from their minds. The erudite,
urivai thaiiya Unketu maarpin
learned in all lore, can't conceive of what these Knowers know. These learned ones,
enpelun thiyangu miyaakkaiyar nanpakaR 130
[reaching] the limits [of knowledge], have become the guides. Passion

palavutan kalintha undiyar ikalotu
and arrant anger, these Seers set to sever. Sorrow
setrram neekkiya manaththina riyaavathum
in any measure is unknown to their character. Having apt
katrrOr aRiyaa aRavinar katrrOrkkuth
disdain as insight, These sages, are the first to enter.
thaamvaram paakiya thalaimaiyar kaamamotu
[The Gandharvas], They with clothing... pure and immaculate, seems like smoke gathered about them.
katunjsinang katintha kaatsiyar itumpai 135
Their bodies, they are mantled, with buds poised to bloom wide-open.
yaavathum aRiyaa iyalpinar mEvarath

Its strings are set to suit the ear.
thuniyil kaatsi munivar muRpukap
Noble lutes, that recite the mercy of the heart.
pukaimukan thanna maasil thUvutai
As they approach with tender words, and strum its sweetened strings.
mukaivaay avilntha thakaisUl kaththus
They with bodies composed without affliction. A mango trees'
sevinErpu vaiththa seyvuRu thivavin 140
sparkling shoot resembles their corporeal form. The abiding shimmer

of the gold-streaked touchstone (24) resembles their beauty marks. With sweet gems
menmoli mEvalar innaram puLara
aplenty held up by thighs that slope and rise.
nOyin RiyanRa yaakkaiyar maavin
Without fault or without blemish these Gandharavas, they do shine.
avirthaLir puraiyum mEniyar avirthORum
With poison hidden in the holes of its whitened fangs,
ponnurai katukkun thithalaiyar innakaip 145
its breath like fire, it terrifies, such is its mighty strength.

paruman thaangiya paNinthEn thalkul
The snake is killed by the ruthless beating of his richly stripped and bending wings...
maasil makaLirotu maRuvinRi viLangak
The bird borne by the long banner, of the Wealthy One. (25) With a white bull
katuvO totungiya thUmputai vaaleyiR
[upon his banner] where his victory [was won], many praise his hearty shoulder,
Ralalena uyirkkum anjsuvaru katunthiRaR
[where] Uma, joined with him, appears. While his three eyes, unblinking,
paampupatap putaikkum palvarik kotunj siRaip 150
who destroyed the triple fort: This great and indignant other Wealthy Lord. (26)

puLLaNi neeLkotis selvanum veLLERu
A thousand times ten multiplied, [the number] of his eyes. A hundred, the many
valavayin uyariya palarpukal thiNithOL
Yagnas, he completed victoriously, (27) [causing] the devastating conquest [of all his enemies]. umaiamarnthu viLangum imaiyaa mukkaN
Two and two multiplied: its tusks that are held high, beautifully it roams [wide],
mUveyil murukkiya muraNmiku selvanum
with its large broad hand hanging low... his elephant so tall.
nUtrruppath thatukkiya naattaththu nURupal 155
He climbs upon its neck, and Tiru (28) is jubilant, [the great lord Indra], the other Wealthy One. (29)

vELvi mutrriya venRatu kotrrath
Four great gods (30) [watch over] the fine hamlets, of this well formed
theeriraN tEnthiya maruppin elilnataith
world. Unified in the doctrine of acting as its guard.
thaalperun thatakkai uyarntha yaanai
Many people praised the three, (31) so they'd become the leaders [once again]. (32)
eruththam ERiya thirukkiLar selvanum
Appearing in the world, to [resume] its defense.
naaRperun theyvaththu nannakar nilaiiya 160
Born of the lotus in an era without pain,

ulakang kaakkum onRupuri koLkaip
the Four-faced One is thus presented, (33) to have a glimpse (34) [of him].
palarpukal mUvarun thalaiva raaka
Appearing in the daylight (35) with no difference in vision, (36 )
Emaru nyaalan thannil thOnRith
of four different natures, (37) the thirty-three [gods],
thaamarai payantha thaavil Uli
and the 9 X 2 (38) [are there] for those who acquire the higher state.
naanmuka oruvaR suttik kaaNvarap 165
They appear as though the stars were in bloom. Or as a gathering of fishes,

pakaliR ROnRum ikalil kaatsi
like wind, moves across the stormy [seas]. As a gust of wind
naalvE RiyaRkaip pathinoru mUvarO
upon a flame which is stoked up, is just like these Mighty Ones. Or as a fire-kindling...
tonpathiR Riratti uyarnilai peReeiyar
bolt of lightening, thunders like their voice. Sublime
meenpUth thanna thOnRalar meensErpu
are these Keepers of Justice, (39) who heed [our] lamenting and stand at his side.
vaLikiLarn thanna selavin vaLiyitaith 170
They who hover [up] in the sky gather together to see...

theeyelan thanna thiRalinar theeppata
the woman, (40) free of suffering, whose doctrine [is chastity.] (41) Some days,
urumitith thanna kuralinar vilumiya
with her at Avinankudi moving about he tends to be.
uRukuRai marungitrram perumuRai koNmaar
And not only there...
antharak kotpinar vanthutan kaaNath
They are unfailing in character, having adopted the 2 X 3 (42).
thaavil koLkai matanthaiyotu sinnaaL 175
Their two parents are deigned to hail from the many various ancient clans. (43)
vinankuti asaithalum uriyan athaa anRu.
6 X 4 when doubled (44) are the treasured years of their youth,

4. thiruvErakam - swaamimalai - Tiru's Place of Beauty

irumUn Reythiya iyalpinin valaaa
passing time upon the path, (45) with the doctrine that speaks of truth. (46)
thiruvars suttiya palvERu tholkuti
Where three types are outlined, the bounty of fires three, (47)
aRunaan kiratti iLamai nalliyaaN
of which the Twice Born know the [proper] time [and know] just what to say.
taaRiniR kalippiya aRanavil koLkai 180
With nine threads strung as three minute strands,

mUnRuvakaik kuRiththa muththees selvath
Their cloth, still wet, dries as they dress,
thirupiRap paaLar poluthaRinthu nuvala
and they salute with their [folded] hands raised to the peak...(48) They praise him
onpathu konda mUnRupuri nuNnyaaN
with the six letters (49) containing the rare scriptures' word. (50)
pularaak kaalakam pulara uteei
Their broad tongues utter [the name], from all sides [of their mouth.]
uchik kUppiya kaiyinar thaRpukalnthu 185
And they hold in their hands fragrant blossoms [imbued] with its own perfume. They are so very joyous...

Reluth thatakkiya arumaRaik kELvi
as he has his abode at Erakam.
naaviyan marungin navilap paati
And not only there...
viRaiyuRu naRumalar Enthip po¢thuvan
Fresh vines, with fragrant greens placed between, [adorn] the Wielder of the Spear...
thErakath thuRaithalum uriyan athaa anRu
There's a lovely bunch of Puttil seeds mixed in... With Wild Jasmine and

5. kunRu thORu aadal The Dance of Each and Every Hill

White Kuthalam blossoms strung as a wreath [and set atop his head];
ampothip puttil viraiik kuLaviyotu
They have scented sandal smeared bright upon their distinguished chests:
veNkU thaaLan thotuththa kaNNiyan
Rough working hill tribe men, who hunt with skillful bow.
naRunjsaan thaNintha kElkiLar maarpiR
With their sweet honey-brew, fermented in long bamboo,
kotuntholil valviR kolaiiya kaanavar
He is happy with his rustic mountain kin.
neetamai viLaintha thEkkat tERaRa 195
With their little drum, the Tondakam, (51) they rejoice and dance in circles holding hands. (52)

kunRakas siRukutik kiLaiyutan makilnthu
Fingered to unfold [so they exude] a matchless fragrant air
thondakas siRupaRaik kuravai ayara
Are the blossoms where the bee is resting, from the deep mountain spring, in the wreath [that adorns his head].
viraluLarppa pavilntha vERupatu naRungaaR
They have woven garlands, and have trussed up their hair
kundusunai pUththa vandupatu kaNNi
Tied it with cannabis leaves and its aromatic flowers,
iNaiththa kOthai aNaiththa kUnthal 200
They've placed in between white bunches of blossoms of the red-trunked Katambu tree.

mutiththa kullai ilaiyutai naRumpUs
And the beetle nibbles at their large leaf skirts, strung beautiful and cool
sengaal maraa aththa vaaliNar itaiyitupu
Dressing their swaying hips in a girdle that refines
surumpuNath thotuththa perunthaN maaththalai
Like peacocks, these maids of innocent design.
thirunthukaal alkul thiLaippa uteei
The Red One; He with Red Robes; The One with the red-trunked
mayilkaN tanna matanatai makaLirotu 205
Ashoka's cool budding leaves hanging from his ears;

seyyan sivantha taiyan sevvarais
The One with the warrior's girdle; The One with war-anklets on; and the One with a wreath of Vetchi blossoms;
seyalaith thandhaLir thuyalvarung kaathinan
He with the flute; He with the horn; He with many small instruments [to play on];
kachinan kalalinan sechaik kaNNiyan
The One who [rides] the ram; The one [astride] the peacock; The One with the rooster, lovely and perfect,
kulalan kOttanan kuRumpal liyaththan
upon his flag; The tall One; The One wearing an armlet upon his shoulder...
thakaran manjneyyan pukaril sEvalang 210
With a gathering of sweet voiced [maids] [sounding] as if flutes were played.

kotiyan netiyan thotiyaNi thOLan
A vision, fragrant and cool, is his bespeckled
narampaarth thanna inkural thokuthiyotu
garment, tied about the waist, so as to touch the ground.
kurumpeRik konda naRunthaN saayal
His arms, broad as mridangam drums, are typically raised high...
marungiR kattiya nilannErpu thukilinan
to embrace the many soft-shouldered fawns, and to lead [them]
mulavuRal thatakkaiyin iyala Enthi 215
in the dance, as he always does, atop each and every hill. And not only there...

menROt palpiNai thaleeith thalaiththanthu
Small grains of millet and flowers are mixed together... [then the throat] of the young goat is cut.
kunRuthO Raatalum ninRathan paNpE athaa anRu.
It is there that they hoist the flag of the cock! (53)

6. palamuthirchOlai - The Garden of Ripening Fruit

In town after town his festival is grandly celebrated,
vaaraNak kotiyotu vayiRpata niReei
By those wanting to worship in all the right places.
Uru r konda seerkelu vilavinum 220
The frenzied dance is performed in the field where the Velan is installed.

rvalar Eththa mEvaru nilaiyinum
Or in the forest garden so lovely, on the isle [where two rivers meet]. (54 )
vElan thaiiya veRiyayar kaLanum
At rivers or at tanks, and various other places...
kaatung kaavung kavinpeRu thuruththiyum
Where four roads come together, (55) at any such kind of junction, or [under] the newly-blossoming flowers of
the Kadampa tree (56)
yaaRung kuLanum vERupal vaippum
where the village assemblies [gather to meet]. In halls or in stables, or any [such kind] of places.
sathukkamunj santhiyum puthuppUng katampum 225
There the revered banner of his command (57) is fittingly adorned,

manRamum pothiyilung kanthutai nilaiyinum
smeared with oil and white mustard, (58) then they whisper a secret, (59)
maandalaik kotiyotu maNNi yamaivara
and bending down in worship, (60) they scatter voluptuous blossoms.
neyyO taiyavi appi aithuraiththuk
Having dressed in two contrasting colors,
kutantham pattuk kolumalar sithaRi
and tying on a red thread, (61) they scatter white puffed-rice...
muraNkoL uruvin irandutan uteeis 230
Constant in its brash might, the wide-hoofed (62) goat is fat...

sennUl yaaththu veNpori sithaRi
It's blood is mixed with pure white rice
mathavali nilai iya maaththaat koluvitaik
and some other rites performed.
kuruthiyotu viraiiya thUveL nyarisi
[These offerings] are placed in bamboo baskets (63)
silpalis seythu palpirap pi¡£is
and sprinkled with fresh tumeric and fragrant mixtures. (64)
siRupasu manjsaLotu naRuvirai theLiththup 235
The large soothing (65) Kanviram flowers [strung as] a garland: fragrant, cool,

perunthaN kaNaveera naRunthaN maalai
and beyond compare; is cut [into smaller strands] and then hung up, suspended [in the air]. thuNaiyuRa aRuththuth thUnga naatrri
They worship in fine hamlets, on the dense mountain peaks, (66)
naLimalais silampin nannakar vaalththi
with fragrant smoke wafting up, the hill-tribe songs are sung.
naRumpukai etuththuk kuRinjsi paati
With the sound of the waterfall's own music, sweet instruments are played,
imilisai aruviyO tinniyang kaRanga 240
with many dark red blossoms scattered, [its song] makes one dismayed. (67)

uruvap palpUth thUuy vekuvarak
And a kind of rice (68) that's red as blood is spread out, and a Kurava maid
kuruthis senthinai parappik kuRamakaL
sounds Muruga's instrument, making those who deny him afraid,
murugiya niRuththu muraNinar utka
[but also], to guide them to Muruga at his broad city filled with fear.
murugaatrrup patuththa urukolu viyanakar
Songs [are heard] to echo through [his] fields of [frenzied] dance. And many
tukaLanj silampap paatip palavutan 245
horns [of music] [are raised up] and held up to their lips. And curving bells are played

kOtuvaay vaiththuk kotumaNi iyakki
to greet [him] Pinimukam, (69) of unconquerable might.
Otaap pUtkaip piNimukam vaalththi
To worship is to get what one asks for, according to one's request...
vEndunar vEndiyaang keythinar valipata
[because] there and there [he's] residing, as everybody knows.
ndaaN tuRaithalum aRintha vaaRE
It whatever place you happen to be, there you'll be able to see [him].
ndaaN taayinum ka kaandaka 250
Whenever you long to look upon his face and do worship, he'll appear there instantly.

munthunee kanduli mukanamarn thEththik
With folded hands, and praised by words, [he's] worshipped by touching [his] feet.
kaitholu up paravik kaaluRa vaNangi
[Then say]: "Tall and great the zenith, (70) blue-green the mountain spring, (71)
netumperunj simayaththu neelappainjsunai
One of the five who abides within, in the palm of his hand received...(72)
aivaruL oruvan angai ERpa
Six [maidens] gave birth to six [babes], who united to form the child!
aRuvar payantha Ramar selva 255
The son of the god at the Banyan tree who [is seen there] to reside! (73) O Wondrous peak,

lkelu katavut puthalva maalvarai
the son of the Mountain's Daughter! (74) He is Yama, [the Lord of Death], to his enemies!
malaimakaL makanE maatrrOr kUtrrE
He's the little one of the warring Korravai, victorious in battle!
vetrri vElpOrk kotrravai siRuva
Child of the Ancient Goddess, adorned by a jewel of distinction!
ilaiyaNi siRappiR palaiyOL kulavi
The Devas' legion commander, with a curving bow!
vaanOr vaNanguvil thaanaith thalaiva 260
[Wearer of] a garland [hung] upon [his] breast! A scholar, [well]-learned in books!

maalai maarpa nUlaRi pulava
One who stands out in battle! A strong warrior who's waging war!
seruvil oruva poruviRal maLLa
Treasure of the sages! The Knower's mountain of words! (75)
anthaNar veRukkai aRinthOr solmalai
Husband of the maidens! Lion (76) [amongst] warriors!
mangaiyar kaNava mainthar ERE
Wealthy One, (77) great and grand, having a spear in his broad hand!
vElkelu thatakkais saalperunj selva 265
Slayer of the mountain, (78) a never-fading victory.

kunRang konRa kunRaak kotrraththu
Lord of the Hills, where tall mountains dash against the sky!
viNporu netuvaraik kuRinjsik kilava
Many people praise him with fine words, this Lion of the Learned! (79)
palarpukal nanmolip pulavar ERE
Of well-begotten lineage, this great name "Muruga"!
arumpeRan marapiR perumpeyar muruga
He gives to those with longing, (80) this Great Man of renown!
nasaiyinark kaaththum isaipE raaLa 270
He gives to those who suffer, this Son with ornaments of gold!

alaanthOrk kaLikkum polampUt sEey
With many battles won, his breast rejoicing in conquest,
mandamar katanthanin venRaa takalaththup
Support of [all] those who [have won] the prize. Tall and full of beauty this one is loved by all! (81)
parisilarth thaangum urukelu netuvE eL
Noblemen praise him, this Hero of great name!
po¢yOr Eththum perumpeyar iyavuL
The mighty Matavali (82) hacks at the brood of the [demon] Sur!
sUrmarung karuththa moympin mathavali 275
Oft compared to battle! This Leader!" [Such his] many [praises]...

pOrmiku poruna kurisil enappala
[But] to the extent of my knowledge, these praises aren't enough.
yaanaRi aLavaiyin Eththi nathu
"[How] rare it is to know your meaSure, in this abiding life.
ninnaLan thaRithal mannuyirk karumaiyin
I came to contemplate your feet. For with you
ninnati uLLi vanthanan ninnOtu
there is no equal, O' Learned One!" I say this
puraiyunar illaap pulamai yOyenak 280
to give some indication, and as I speak... then instantly... Upon pointing out

kuRiththathu moliyaa aLavaiyiR kuRiththutan
[your] numerous varied forms, many dwarfish little devils, (83)
vERupal uruviR kuRumpal kULiyar
at a grand festival are celebrating... having appeared in the field!
saaRayar kaLaththu veeRupeRath thOnRi
[They say]: "We who are so lowly, We requested your wizened truths...
aLiyan RaanE muthuvaay iravalan
And you came, you Noble One! We cherish your abundant glory!"
vanthOn perumanin vaNpukal nayanthena 285
[All] that which is sweet, [All] that which is good, so many, many ways he is praised...

iniyavum nallavum nanipala Eththith
And divinity does shine forth, in the form of [his] boundless strength.
theyvanj saanRa thiRalviLang kuruvin
[A form] that's come to reach a height, so as to touch the sky. (84)
vaanROy nivappiR Raanvan theythi
[Thus], [his] divine character's profusion, contains the higher states. As an ancient
aNangusaal uyarnilai thaleeip pandaiththan
waft of fragrance, his divine and youthful goodness is revealed: (85)
maNangamal theyvath thiLanalang kaatti 290
[He'll] say, "Be rid of your fear. I know why you have come."

anjsal Ompumathi aRivanin varavena
There is no end to [his] fine words, imbued with love.
anputai nanmoli aLaii viLivin
With a dark ocean, encircling this Earth
RiruLniRa munneer vaLaiiya ulakath
[he'll] make you alone appear [to attain] the superb
thorunee yaakath thOnRa vilumiya
reception, [as he] confers [his] precious gift! And not only that...(86)
peRalarum parisil nalkumathi palavutan 295
[Like] many varied fabrics (87) fluttering, [it] carries off the Akil trees. (88)

vERupaq Rukilin nutangi akilsuman
The sandalwoods from root to tip, [then] come rolling down; Bamboo...
thaara mulumuthal Urutti vEraR
its flowers, with its glittering branches, are [swept away] alone. [Its] roots [had been] cracked. pUvutai alangusinai pulampavEr keendu
[As if] the sky-jousting, tall mountain's sun, out gathering honey...
viNporu netuvarai parithiyiR Rotuththa
had broken open the full blown honeycomb, exuding coolness... [Its honey with] much fine and thaNkamal alariRaal sithaiya nanpala 300
ripened pulp of the jackfruit mixed together [in the raging torrent]. Way up on the peak.

arasini muthusuLai kalaava meemisai
The aromatic blossoms of the Surapunnai tree are scattered. The black monkey
naaka naRumalar uthira yUkamotu
Shivers along with the big-faced ape; and [with their] speckled brows
maamuka musukkalai panippap pUnuthal
the dark she-elephants quiver in [its] spray. While the large bull elephants,
irumpiti kuLirppa veesip perungaLitrru
with pearl in their white tusks, are Surrounded by its gushing...
muththutai vaankOtu thaleeith thaththutrru 305
With fine golden jewel-like colors shining, sifting gold.

nanpon maNiniRang kiLarap ponkoliyaa
With plantain trees pulled up whole, and the coconut trees'
vaalai muluthal thumiyath thaalai
best bunch of nuts, scattered,
iLaneer vilukkulai uthirath thaakkik
[from the force] [of its] attack.
kaRikkotik karunthuNar saayap poRippuRa
Bunches of black blossoms from the curry creeper fall down, and the spotted tails...
matanatai manjney palavutan vEreeik 310
of many innocent peacocks are thus frightened away

kOli vayappetai iriyak kElalO
and the rugged hen also flees along with the wild boars...
tirumpanai veLitrrin punsaay anna
[who] just like the dark palm tree, with its prickly thorns,
kurU umayi riyaakkaik kutaavati uLiyam
have black and hairy bodies [much like] the bow-legged bears,
perungal vitaraLais seRiyak karungOt
who hide in mountain caves and hallows. The black-horned
taamaa nallERu silaippas sENin 315
oxens' goodly bulls do bellow... and far away

Rilumena ilitharum aruvip
is [heard] the hum of the waterfall's descent,
palamuthir sOlai malaikila vOnE.
at Palamutircolai! [at] the mountain of our Lord!!!


kunRam eRinthaay kuraikataliR sUrthatinthaay
punRalaiya pUthap porupataiyaay .. enRum
iLaiyaay alakiyaay ERUrnthaan ERE
uLaiyaayen uLLath thuRai. 1

kunRam eRinthathuvung kunRappOr seythathuvum
anRang kamararitar theerththathuvum .. inRennaik
kaivitaa ninRathuvung kaRpothumpiR kaaththathuvum
meyvitaa veerankai vEl. 2

veeravEl thaaraivEl viNNOr siRaimeetta
theeravEl sevvEL thirukkaivEl .. vaari
kuLiththavEl kotrravEl sUrmaarpum kunRum
thuLaiththavEl undE thuNai. 3

innam orugaal enathitumpaik kunRukkum
konnavilvER sUrthatintha kotrravaa .. munnam
panivEy netungunRam patturuvath thotta
thanivElai vaangath thakum. 4

unnai oliya oruvaraiyum nampukilEn
pinnai oruvaraiyaan pinsellEn .. pannirugaik
kOlappaa vaanOr kotiyavinai theerththaruLum
vElappaa senthilvaal vE. 5

anjsu mukanthOnRil Ru mukanthOnRum
venjsamaril anjsalena vElthOnRum .. nenjsil
orugaal ninaikkin irugaalun thOnRum
murugaEn ROthuvaar mun. 6

muruganE senthil muthalvanE maayOn
maruganE eesan makanE .. orugaimukan
thampiyE ninnutaiyE thandaikkaal eppoluthum
nampiyE kaitholuvEn naan. 7

kaakkak kataviyanee kaavaa thirunthakkaal
rkkup paramaam aRumukavaa .. pUkkum
katampaa murugaa kathirvElaa nalla
itangaaN irangaay ini. 8

parangunRiR pannirugaik kOmaanRan paatham
karangUppik kaNkuLirak kandu .. surungaamal
saiyaal nenjsE aNimurugaaR Ruppataiyaip
pUsaiyaak kondE pukal. 9

nakkeerar thaam uraiththa nanmurugaaR Ruppataiyaith
thaRkOla naaLthORum saatrrinaal .. muRkOla
maamurugan vanthu manakkavalai theerththaruLith
thaan ninaintha ellaam tharum. 10

References made in (brackets) for the above English Meaning of Thirumurugaatrruppadai:

(1). Invoking "the world" at the beginning of a poem is considered auspicious.

(2). The word for "right" used here (valan/vl[f ), also means victory. So an alternate opening would read:
The World delights
as he rises victorious
and goes wandering...
"Right" presumably refers to the right side of mount Kailasha, which is Siva's abode, the cosmic axis, and center of the world. The god is here envisioned as the rising sun.

(3). So Muruga is both the Sun in the sky, as well as the sacred "Son" of the Goddess Korravai.

(4).("strength") + ("having") ("attempt") ("feet")- Uraiyaciriyar's commentary would render this line as:
Those who approach
have the support
of his mighty,
ego-crushing feet.

(5). Naccinarkkiniyar would render this verse as:
His destruction
of his enemies
coldly contrasts
his broad hand.

(6). the expression used here for "ocean," literally means "what the cloud takes."

(7). The Sun & Moon, who literally, "cut" the sky with their light.

(8). The Sengadambu tree is here called the mra `mf.

(9). The term used here for this highly refined form of gold is "navalam/navlamf ."

(10). Blue lotus.

(11). A kind of jewelry worn on the head, called "Tevya Utti."

(12). The word used here for mountain (silampakam/cilmfpkmf ) literally means "the place of echoes."

(13). Uraiyaciriyar (and Parimelazhakar also offers this as a possible alternate reading) ineterprets the word
for "she-monkey" (manti/mnfti ) as actually refering to Aditya or the Sun. So the passage would read:
A mountain range
with trees so dense,
it's unknown
[even] to the Sun.

(14). As we saw in the previous footnote, this should literally read "the she-monkey doesn't know it."

(15). Tradition holds that when the deity comes down to Earth, bees won't dare approach the garland of the god.

(16). This flower, the gloriosa superba, is likened by poets to the evocative gesture of worshipping maids, whose palms are held together with fingers spreading like a blossoming flower.

(17). An ancient dance of joy and victory, where the hands are placed on the shoulders and the arms flap like the wings of a bird.

(18). That is, a body part man and part animal.

(19). In the Sangam age, if a king wishes to wage war, he erects a flag post at the border, and hangs from it a ball of coiled twine and twelve dolls. This tells the enemy king that he is only fit to play childish games.

(20). In Sangam times a seven-storied building was a sign of great status.

(21). A sophisticated poetical-bhakti image, where the god's pervasive presence in nature (i.e. as the hillside flowers) is likened to the eyes of one's lover as they awaken beside them.

(22). Parimelazhakar says that Muruga has five different crowns. The other commentators are in agreement that these are five different gems.

(23). The Tamil in this line echoes that of line five.

(24). This line may also be read, "of golden foam".

(25). Celvan, here an epithet of Vishnu.

(26). Celvan is again used, this time to denote Siva.

(27). Tradition holds that to complete a hundred fire sacrifices is to become an Indra.

(28). Naccinarkkiniyar explains that Tiru, appropriately, refers to Lakshmi. Before the advent of the Linga Purana, Lakshmi was the consort of whoever was the supreme sovereign. First she was wife of Indra, then Kubera, and finally Vishnu when the Churning of the Milk Sea myth first appears in the Linga Purana in the 4th CE. Uraiyaciriyar explains Tiru as here meaning "beauty".

(29). Celvan is yet again used, this time for Indra.

(30). Naccinarkkiniyar explains that these four great gods are Indra, Yama, Varuna, and Soma. Parimaelazhahar, oddly explains the four great Tevams as being the four varnas or castes.

(31). According to Naccinarkkiniyar, the three are Ayan, Hari, and Haran (i.e. Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva).

(32). The proper role of the trinity was undermined when Muruga declared that his victory over the asuras was due to the power of his spear. Brahma in his arrogance announced that he was its creator. So Muruga humbled him with the curse that he be born on Earth (or alternately held him captive in a cave).

(33). Literally, "pointed out".

(34). Presumably inferring that the Creator comes into being just to have the darshan of Muruga, and by extension brings about creation for a purpose much the same. This section may also be referring to those who achieve the higher state in line 168.

(35). An alternate rendering would be, "Appearing as the Sun."

(36). "Vision" here can also be read as "opinion".

(37). The 4 classes of deity that make up the thirty three gods include the 12 Adityas, the 11 Rudras, the 8Vasus, and the 2 Maruts.

(38). The 9X2 refer to the 18 Ganas.

(39). MAb eka]fmaL.

(40). Presumably Devasena.

(41). Alt. "The woman whose doctrine is free of suffering."

(42). The six duties of the Brahman: (1) reciting and (2) teaching the Vedas, (3) performing yagnas, (4) having them performed, (5) giving and (6) recieving charity.

(43). KF or gotra.


(45). May mean either "six" or "path". Parimelazhakar say that the passage refers to Brahmins spending time studying the six religions(?!!!).

(46). Or dharma.

(47). The three types of sacrificial fires, with their varied functions, are partly defined by the shape of the fire pit: with the triangular Dakshinagni, the square-shaped Ahavaniya, and the semi-circular Grihapatya.

(48). Held above their heads or directed to the mountain's zenith.

(49). The commentators designate "Nama Kumaraya" as the original six lettered mantra (vs. the more contemporary "Saravanabhava").

(50). "That which is heard", i.e. the mantra. The "scripture" referred to here is most likely a universalizing allusion to Vedic tradition in general.

(51). eta]fdkmf.

(52). An ancient dance, known as the Kuravai (KrAv).

(53). Parimaelazhahar reads "[at that] place" as vyiL +(pfp )+ud[f or "horn"(+aux.). So an alternate reading
of the line would be:
Then the flag of the cock
and horns [of the goat]
are held high.

(54). Can refer to any small isle in a river.

(55). The forceful attribution of Muruga with Mars is clumsy at best, it stems from Sanskritizing attributions
that taut him as the God of War. But his character is most definitely Mercurial in nature, and as the Greeks and
Romans erected posts and shrines to honor Mercury at all junctions, we can see the relationship is more than

(56). The 'Sea-side Indian Oak' (anthocephalus kadamba).

(57). Translated here as "dignified/revered," "leadership/chief," and "flag." Naccinarkkiniyar reads this section as if in ancient times they depicited the cock on Murugan's banner as having a man's head.

(58). There is a reference in the Tolkappiyam that oil mixed with white mustard will keep away all evil.

(59). This renedering is based on Naccinarkkiniyar's commentary. A more literal rendering would be:
smeared with oil
and white mustard.
They speak
so beautifully.

(60). Parimelazhakar says that this "bending worship" actually refers to a specific mode of salutation where the fingers of both hands are intertwined at the chest, while the two thumbs are extended so as to touch the heart.

(61). Presumably some kind of raksha or rakhi is tied about their wrists.

(62). What is translated here as "wide-hoofed" is literally rendered "large feet". Parimelazhakar, explains this expressions to be referring to elephants (!) that are sacrificed with the goats.

(63). Both Naccinarkkiniyar and Uraiyaciriwar interpret meaning as "bamboo basket", but Kavipperumal favors the word's alternate meaning, this being "a bamboo cane," that is set alongside these offerings. Parimelazhakar once again provides us with an interesting interpretation as he sees the word to mean to mean MAl or "breast," as the worshippers chests are smeared with the blood-soaked rice.

(64). viAr can also refer to "cosmetics."

(65). (lit. "cool").

(66). The word for "peak" used here also means "anklet." At Pazhamutircolai there was once a river that flowed from its peak, back in Sangam days. It was called Silamparu, but is now mistakenly referred to as Nupuru Kangkai or "Anklet River."

(67). (lit. "afraid").

(68). tiA[.

(69). "Attractive Face", the name of Muruga's elephant. Parimelazhakar says that pinimukam refers to his peacock.

(70). Refers to mount Kailash.

(71). Refers to Lake Saravanbhava.

(72). Agni, one of the five elements residing in the body, received the seed of Siva.

(73). Referring to Dakshinamurti, but as the text literally describes the tree as being "full of" the god, it may infer a time when the god was worshipped as the tree itself, rather the divine guru who sits beneath it.

(74). Parvati.

(75). Naccinarkkiniyar informs us that the god is envisioned as a mountain formed of the praises of his devotees.
Uraiyaciriyar & Parimelazhakar explain that those who know Muruga (because of the sheer immensity of his being) are
confronted with a mountain of words, when they try to praise him. (Just as this vast sequence of epithets implies.) Pariti's
commentary states that he is the mountain praised by scholars.

(76). May also mean "head" or "bull."

(77). Celvan is again used.

(78). The demon, Tarakasuran took the form of a hill.

(79). See 76

(80). Naccinarkkiniyar specifies 'those longing for liberation.'


(82). Uraiyaciriyar explains the name (mtvli) to mean "Great Strength."

(83). Naccinarkkiniyar and Uraiyaciriyar deny him his devilish attendants, and instead say these kuli (Pqi) are"worshippers."

(84). Muruga's own "Visvarupa."

(85). Out of mercy for those who cannot bare his Universal Form, he manifests as a youth.

(86). Lit. "Along with many..."

(87). The commentators all describe these fabrics as being 'flags.'

(88). A tree of particularly strong character. Like the sandalwood of the following verse, it is employed as incense in sacrifice, much like the sacrifice it experiences in this auspicious torrent.


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