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Tamil Books - Forgotten History
Ever wondered what the oldest living language in the world is? It’s Tamil. With a history of close to 5000 years, Tamil is the official language of three countries: India, Sri Lanka, and Singapore. It is the official language of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and the Union Territory of Puducherry and is also widely spoken by significant minorities in the other four South Indian states of Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and the Union Territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Tamil, is one of the 22 scheduled languages of India. Even though Sanskrit is older than Tamil, it’s a language that is not in common use today.
The 2300 Year Old Grammar Book
The oldest Tamil book is the Tholkappiyam. The Tholkappiyam, is a work on the grammar of the Tamil language and the earliest extant work of Tamil literature and linguistics. While the exact date of the work is unknown, based on linguistic and other evidence, it has been dated between the 3rd century BC and the 5th century AD. The fact that a book on Tamil grammar dates back to 2300 years back, is proof enough that the language itself is at least 4000 years old.
Tamil Books Online
Check out these authors if you want to read some of the best Tamil books ever written.
Thirukkural - Masterpiece in World Literature
The Thirukkural, considered equivalent to the Vedas of the Hindu scriptures, has been widely translated both in Indian and European Languages and is among the oldest literary works of the world. Researchers have traced the age of this work to 300 BC. In recent years, a full English translation was published by the M.P. BirlaFoundation in 1988. One of the reasons for its wide translation in different languages of the world is the undeniable fact that the ethics and the values it carries are applicable to all religions, all countries, and surprisingly, all times. This universality is a unique feature for any literary works of ancient or modern times.
Scholarly Tamil Poets, as well as kings of the three Tamil Kingdoms, acknowledged the literary greatness of Thirukkural in South India. It is said that at the time of its first presentation to the King's court, the ruling Pandyan King wanted its greatness to be made known to all poets and the public alike. Each one of the 1330 couplets is noted for its brevity and rich meaning.
Ponniyin Selvan is a historical novel by Kalki Krishnamurthy (pen name - Kalki), written in Tamil. In five volumes it tells the story of the early days of Arulmozhivarman, who later became the great Chola emperor Rajaraja Chola I.
Ponniyin Selvan is widely considered by many great writers and novelists to be the greatest novel ever written in Tamil literature. It was first published as a series in the Kalki Tamil magazine during the 1950s and was later integrated into a novel. Even today, the novel has a cult following and fan base among people of all generations. The book continues to be admired and garners critical acclaim for its tightly woven plot, vivid narration, the wit of the dialogue, and the way in which the power struggle and intrigues of the Chola empire were depicted.
Don’t wait to dive into your favourite book. You can find a large variety of Tamil books online and even translations of books of other languages in Tamil.