Learn Sangam Tamil

24 Nov


Please learn the Sangam poems if you want to know your heritage as a Tamil.  These poems reveal the sophisticated ancient Tamil culture of over 2,000 years ago.  The literature is a record of Tamil Nadu history of about 500 – 600 years.

Our ancestors who wrote the Sangam poems were geniuses.  There are 18 books.  They have left this incredible treasure for all of us to enjoy.  We as Tamils are very lucky to have inherited their poetry.  With some effort, all of us can learn and enjoy these poems.  In A.K. Ramanujan’s words “Even one’s own tradition is not one’s birthright; it has to be earned, repossessed”.   

In addition to translation, I have given meanings which will help to learn.  I have deliberately translated into easy, contemporary English so that the reader can learn the original Tamil poems easily.  English is a mere tool which could help Tamils to learn the original Tamil poems.  I have also written ‘eliya Tamil urai’ for some Kurunthokai, Ainkurunuru, Natrinai, Akananuru, Kalithokai and Purananuru poems.  I have also written ‘eliya Tamil urai’ for Mullaippaattu and Nedunalvaadai.  Please buy the Tamil urai books written by our great scholars (நச்சினார்க்கினியர், ஒளவை துரைசாமி, உ. வே. சாமிநாதையர், பொ. வே. சோமசுந்தரனார், அருள் அம்பலவாணர், பின்னத்தூர் அ. நாராயணசாமி ஐயர், இரா. இராகவையங்கார், தி. சதாசிவ ஐயர், அ. தட்சிணாமூர்த்தி, கு. வெ. பாலசுப்ரமணியன்).  That is the best way to learn these lovely poems and know our past.

Please contact me if you need to know more about the urai books written by these scholars – kavini100@gmail.com.

This is a one person effort.  Kindly share this site with friends and family.  You need to get my permission to put my translations in any book or internet site.  I update my work constantly, add more details, valuable references, grammar notations and cross references in the Notes section.  If you download, please update your files at least once a month.    

A.K. Ramanujan wrote, “These poem are ‘classical,’ i.e., early, ancient; they are also ‘classics,’ i.e., works that have stood the test of time, the founding works of a whole tradition.  Not to know them is not to know a unique and major poetic achievement of Indian civilization”.

In addition to Sangam, I have also translated the following to English, with meanings – முத்தொள்ளாயிரம், பாண்டிக்கோவை, திருக்குறள், 6 பதினெண்கீழ்க்கணக்கு அக நூல்கள்.

Here are  some of my other sites:

1. முத்தொள்ளாயிரம் – https://muthollaayiram.wordpress.com

2. பாண்டிக்கோவை – https://pandikkovai.wordpress.com

3. திருக்குறள் – https://thirukkuralinenglish.wordpress.com

4. ஆறு பதினெண்கீழ்க்கணக்கு அக நூல்கள் – https://pathinenkeelkanakku.wordpress.com (திணைமாலை நூற்றைம்பது, திணை மொழி ஐம்பது, ஐந்திணை எழுபது, ஐந்திணை ஐம்பது, கார் நாற்பது, கைந்நிலை)

5. Tagore’s Gitanjali translation – https://gitanjaliintamil.wordpress.com

6.  மாணிக்கவாசகரின் திருக்கோவையார் – https://thirukkovaiyaar.wordpress.com

7.  Data from Sangam Literature – https://sangamliteraturefacts.wordpress.com (Lists of fauna, flora, towns in ancient Tamil Nadu, kings, poets, reference to non-Tamils, occupations, food etc.)

8. Excerpts from the research articles of Iravatham Mahadevan regarding the Indus Valley Civilization – keezhadiandindusvalleycivilization.com  (a site that will have the key points of the research of Asko Parpola in the coming weeks)

9.  Sangam Poems that are reflected in Divyaprabandham (I have listed many.  There are still more to be listed) -https://sangamanddivyaprabandham.com/

10.  https://sangamliteraturefacts.wordpress.com/ (this site has the key facts seen in Sangam literature)

11.  https://sangambyphone.wordpress.com/ (this site has lessons 1 through 12 that can be used by students to learn on their own, plus articles on Sangam literature, Akam conventions etc.  In addition, it has the easy urai for the 10 long songs and for some of the anthology poems).



Vaidehi Herbert

Hawaii, U.S. A.

– ©  All Rights Reserved

32 Responses to “Learn Sangam Tamil”

  1. vignesh April 29, 2011 at 8:23 pm #

    A Very excellent Initiative..
    I have just started going through this…

  2. T.Suba salini July 29, 2011 at 6:07 am #

    please give me the details in tamil

  3. S. Chandrasekhar August 12, 2011 at 6:51 pm #

    I just came across your site. I will begin to learn through your collection. Your insight, and organization and your love for learning are amazing. I have been frustrated that why such a collection of Tamil literature of Sangam period are not properly taught.
    Great Service. I will be in touch as i read through them


    S. Chandrasekhar

  4. deepak paramasivam January 9, 2012 at 2:46 pm #

    it is really good that you are doing this. I’m a software engineer. I’ll be able to help you if you need any support.

  5. Grace February 15, 2012 at 4:32 pm #

    Wow, its soo great! Hats off to you! I love Tamil so much, and I want my kids to learn it too…not only to speak and write but to know sangam Tamil literature…I have been noting down poems and meanings and was planning to put in a blog…Now I came across your site and am amazed …its so deep…I wonder If I can do this much….

  6. thanaraj February 24, 2012 at 1:49 am #

    உங்கள் சேவை என்றும் தேவை. வாழ்க வளமுடன்.

  7. Tamil Rasigan May 13, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

    Great Effort. Keep it going…

  8. Arun May 29, 2012 at 2:27 pm #

    Excellent piece of work! I’ve been to Germany and to Italy, people in Germany communicate among themselves only in German (even if they can speak English very well), and the same was in Italy. They use English only as a medium of communication with people who cannot sepack their native language. Its only we Indians who take the pride in defaming our native language!!

    ஆங்கிலத்தில் உரையாடுவதை கௌரவமாக நினைக்கும் இக்காலத்தில் இத்தகைய சேவை மிகவும் அவசியமானது!


  9. Parthiban July 20, 2012 at 1:43 am #

    Wonderful Work! Thanks a lot.

  10. vidhya August 13, 2012 at 8:08 am #

    simply superb.. good work.. continue this…

  11. Wilson Amalraj S October 14, 2012 at 4:34 pm #

    Ungal Sevaiku en mudharkan vanakam. i was looking for a tamil name for my son. i jus came across ur site. happy to see it and looking forward to learn and associate more.


  12. Madhavamoorthy November 11, 2012 at 4:34 am #

    வணக்கம், எதையோ தொலைத்து எங்கு தொலைத்தோமோ என்று வாடிய உலகத்திற்கு அமுது அளித்துள்ளீர். சேவை தொடருட்டும். இதற்கு முன்னாள் இழந்தவை என்னவென்று நாம் அறியோம். இருப்பதைக் காத்து இன்புறுவோம். நன்றி!

  13. Chenthil Kumar December 19, 2012 at 11:02 am #

    அருமையான முயற்சி… வாழ்த்துக்கள்… பலமுறை இந்த தளத்திற்கு வந்து ரசித்து செல்கிறேன்…

  14. Gowri January 24, 2013 at 5:44 pm #

    ஆஹா!!! அற்புதம்!!! நான் இரண்டாம் ஆண்டு பி. ஏ தமிழ் படிக்கின்றேன். எனக்கு உங்கள் வலைத்தளம் மிகவும் பயன் படும். தமிழுக்கு நீங்கள் ஆற்றி இருக்கும் இத் தொண்டு மிகவும் வரவேற்கத் தக்கது.

  15. Sa.Tamilselvan January 28, 2013 at 9:20 am #

    அடடா.. இத்தனை காலம் உங்கள் இந்த முயற்சிகள் பற்றி அறியாமல் இருந்துவிட்டேனே… நண்பர் ப.கு.ராஜன் மூலம்தான் அறிந்து கொண்டேன்.இனி தொடர்ந்து இவ்வலைத்தளங்களை வாசிப்பேன்.நண்பர்களையும் வாசிக்கச் சொல்கிறேன்.அருமையான தமிழ்ச்சேவை இது.நான் தமிழ்நாடு முற்போக்கு எழுத்தாலர் கலைஞர்கள் சங்கத்தில் மாநிலத்தலைவர் என்கிற பொறுப்பில் இப்போது பணியாற்றி வருகிறேன்.எங்கள் அமைப்பின் படைபாளிகளையும் வாசிக்கச் சொல்லுவேன்.தொடரட்டும் உங்கள் உண்மையான தமிழ்ச்சேவை.வாழ்த்துக்கள்.அன்புடன் ச.தமிழ்ச்செல்வன்

  16. Poet RaYa Chellappaa April 5, 2013 at 4:48 pm #

    இப்படியும் ஒரு சேவையா? தன்னலமற்ற உங்கள் தொண்டை எப்படி பாராட்டுவது என்று தெரியவில்லை. எனது வலைப்பூவில் உங்களை இணைத்துள்ளேன்.

  17. Vasanth June 8, 2013 at 3:05 am #

    Great initiative vaidehi.. People all around the world learn their traditional literatures. We, tamilians are very ignorant about our very own literatures.


  18. Dhinakar June 16, 2013 at 8:05 pm #

    I just heard your interview in BBC Tamil. It is very nice to hear your initiative. Good luck!!!

  19. மணி வேலுப்பிள்ளை June 16, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

    வாழ்நாள் தமிழ்த் தொண்டு விருது பெறவேண்டிய தங்கள் செவ்வியை தமிழோசையில் கேட்டு வியந்தேன். தங்கள் மொழிபெயர்ப்புகள் எங்கள் அரிய சொத்துகள் ஆகும். அவற்றைக் கற்றுத்தேர்வது எம் கடனாகும். மணி வேலுப்பிள்ளை

  20. siva Sinniah June 17, 2013 at 9:16 pm #

    I came to know yr site today. I feel the entire Tamil community must be indebted to you for ever for this invaluable work. These miraculous works of our ancestors must be made worldwide. Some scholars have started this noble task because of the advent of modern technology. Hats off to you. I will go through every thing and will get in touch with you. Good luck.
    Siva Sinniah-Toronto,Canada.

  21. Saravanaram.K September 19, 2013 at 2:42 pm #

    வாழ்க நீ எம்மான்!

  22. Sarala S October 19, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

    Awesome Vaidehi. I come across this site when I was looking for translation / dictionary of many words in Sangam poems.

  23. selva December 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm #

    Really nice . I am learning kurunthogai .from ur site.very nice tamil poems .thanks for lot.

    • DR H.GANESH December 19, 2013 at 5:21 pm #

      your effort is highly commendable.i am reading your book pathitru pathu ;it is a treasure about people,animals,plants,human relations and a host of other things during that period.an interesting aspect i noted was in how many different ways a king has been praised ;in how many facets the poet has analysed the king is indeed mind boggling.i have made a list and few of the encomiums showered on the king are:he will not speak lies even in his dreams;he likes to show his dancing ability in a battle(ie his acts with his armoury in a battle are nothing short of an artistic form) and does not like to show them in a city dance festival.
      really a wonderful work by ms vaidehi.

  24. E.Jesuthasan (Jason) February 12, 2014 at 12:08 pm #

    What can I say but surrender at your feet and say “Thank You”, not just on my behalf but all the Tamils of the world, for this selfless yet personally worthy, quite yet publicly laudable, academically stimulating yet individually most rewarding GIFT to all the future generations of Tamils, be they at home in Tamilaham or be they the ones scattered the entire globe, many of who slowly yet surely lose touch with their most cherished heritage, history, their blessings of being the inheritors of not one of the greatest but the oldest treasure of human civilisation, the richest, the purest (for representing in its inception the sentiments of secularism), the thoughtful (for its fine mix of nature (puram), self (aham), defining nature into four type of lands, and stating what ought to be a literary criticism as early as the 2nd sangam period while still the so called world civilizations were yet to take their first breath.
    I am so proud of your work and cant find words to praise your efforts. Go forth to enjoy your life as the tamil history will remember you for not centuries but to the end your most glorious achievement.
    With your work, you’ve set the stage for 4th Sangam to flourish, in digital form. May this be your legacy for generations to come.
    Poet Jason, UK.

  25. Nazir March 29, 2014 at 8:21 am #

    I have always been a fan of your blog. We need efforts of this kind.

  26. Prof.R.Panneerselvam,Ph.D. April 16, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

    Let me wish you for the service you are doing for Tamil language and literature.

  27. marylavanya June 30, 2014 at 8:41 am #

    i have no words to explain how greatful i am at your work . i just want to bow down before you.

  28. rloganathan January 11, 2015 at 8:40 am #

    Very grateful to you for your wonderful contribution in making this great collection of Tamil literature treasure available to all.

  29. mythraie June 23, 2015 at 6:07 pm #

    I am starting right from today.

  30. DreamTemples August 24, 2016 at 3:20 pm #

    This is a monumental work Vaidehi and obviously a labour of love, I found your site when I was searching for the purananooru poems on Valvil Ori with their meaning for my blog post. This site is a delight to read and I keep visiting it.Thank you for this work you are doing.

  31. Ilavarasi August 27, 2016 at 5:48 pm #

    வாழ்க வளமுடன்.வளர்க உங்கள் தமிழ்ப்பணி.

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