Friday, October 1, 2010

Various Religions that used Mudaliar title in historical times

People from all castes were awarded this title by the kings. Many Brahmins, Warriors, Poets and Sages were awarded this title in various countries. Even Jews in kerala were awarded this title in 1215 AD by the Maharajah of Cochin, according to the book by Si. Pi. Acyutamēnōn . In the 17th century a leading Muslim trader Marakkayar was given a brief description of various castes using

Tondaimandala Kondaikatti Vellalar

Tradition suggests that this group were the first Vellalar groups that were settled in Tondaimandalam by Adondai Chakravarti after overthrowing the Kurumbar sovereignty. Adondai Chakravarti is described in various ways: a) as a lieutenant in the Chola empire, b) as the son of ancient Chola King Kokkili and a Naga princess, c) as the illegitimate son of Rajendra Kulotunga Chola I and a palace attendant, d) son of Karikala Chola. This claim appears blurred due to the ambiguous identity of Adondai Chakravarti and the time of such settlement. There are conflicting sources, some that say, the settlement was in 7th or 8th century AD and others that say that it was much later in 11th or 12th century AD. Nevertheless, this settlement is much later than Karikala Chola's settlement of Tondaimandalam. This Vellalar group seems to have been the most successful group during British times. There were many Mirasidars and Zamindars belonging to this group. They are mainly concentrated in Madras and Chingleput district only. Their mother tongue is Tamil.

Tondaimandala Saiva Vellalar

The Tondaimandala Saiva Vellala Mudaliars are forward-caste and are vegetarians. They are the original homogeneous group of Mudaliyars who were settled in Tondaimandalam or Tondai Nadu in South India by Chola King, Karikala Chola. Karikala Chola annexed Thondai naadu and gave it to his son Athondai after whom the region is named after. They are feudal lords, major landowners in Thondaimandalam area which includes the present day areas of Chennai, Chengalpet, Kanchipuram, Vellore etc. A significant population of Thondaimandala Saiva Vellala Mudaliars have also migrated to other areas such as Madurai, Tirunelveli etc. Dalawai Ariyanatha Mudaliar who is regarded as the founder of the Poligar system also settled some of them in areas outside of Thondaimandalam. They are endogamous and inter-marriage with other Mudaliars is quite rare. Their mother tongue is Tamil . Some of the Tamils in Ceylon also trace their lineage to this group some of whom had become saints called Nayanars. The book: The Tamils in Early Ceylon By C. Sivaratnam traces some of the Mudaliyars in Ceylon to Thaninayaka Mudaliyar (among other), a rich Saiva Vellala who emigrated to Ceylon from Tondaimandalam.

Agamudayar/Arcot/Thuluva Vellala

The Agam udayar actually belong to the Mukkulathor community, which also includes the Kallars and Maravars. These three communities together known as Mukkulathor generally use "Thevar" as their surname. But later the Agam udaiyars (the most upward community among the three) slowly migrated towards the northern part of Tamil Nadu, settled there, changed their caste name to Thuluva Vellala. So in reality Thuluva vellalar is just the renaming of Agam udayar and hence are classified as one by the Tamil Nadu government, India. So intermingling of on a large scale between two distinct communities is very unlikely and has no historical evidence. The Agam udaiyars changed their name to Thuluva Vellala. As early as 13th century, Agam udayars were using Mudaliar title. This inscription illustrates the accounts of the temple of Rajaraja-Isvaram-Udaiyar at Rajraja-Kulattur in Tiruvindalur-nadu, a subdivision of Rajraja-valanadu were audited by Kayiladamudaiyan alias Solakon-Pallavaraiyar, an agambadi-mudali of Solakon, between the 23rd and 25th [days of Adi]

Kerala Muthali/Mudali

Kerala Muthali (Mudali) belongs to various Mudaliar communities. They are predominantly found in the areas of Trivandrum and Palghat Districts of Kerala and Kanyakumari District of Tamil Nadu. They migrated to these places starting late 17th Century onwards for various purposes including Agriculture, Coconut Oil extraction, Coir Trade and as Specialized Fighters and Reliable Spies. They were given special preference by Royal Family of Travancore due to their cultural similarity and loyalty. This status resulted in furhter deepening their area of influence with in Travancore. During the British era many families came in to the influence of Christianity and became strong supporters and eventually embraced that religion. Unlike the Tamil Brahmins settled in various places of Kerala, Muthalis/Mudalis engage with marital relationships with Nairs, Chakravar, Sakravar (Kavathi) and those who are converted to Christianity but retaining Mudaliar identity. Kerala Muthalis still keep their separate identity even though they are a micro-minority caste in Kerala. Due to their linguistic and educational backwardness Kerala, Tamilnadu and Pondicherry states have categorized them as BCs. Gradually after independence and state reorganization, Kerala Muthalis have completely integrated with the Kerala Culture, but still consider Lord Muruga/Subramanya as their primary god of worship while most of the Kerala Hindus are devotees of Lord Vishnu.

Sri Lankan Mudaliyars

History of Jaffna has at least two or three clans from Thondaimandalam with Mudali surname. Irumarapum Thooya Thaninayaga Mudali from Seyyoor and Mannadukonda Mudali whose clan has been quoted even during famour poet Kambar's time. Please read Vaipava Malai and migration of people from Thondai Nadu to Jaffna and then write about Sri Lankan Mudaliars. It is not a British Phenomenon. Here is the direct quotation from a part of Kailaya Malai a historical book of Jaffna on the migration into Jaffna from Thondai Nadu. The other clans may come under this section or under Sri Lankan Vellalar section. The next was the Vellala of the family of him who shed over kamban a shower of gold for the work of Erezhupatu, whose country was Tondainade, who had a widespread name, who used to wear a lotus garland and whose name was Maanadukanda Mudali. He was made to reside at Irupalai.

The next was the Vellala of Seyur, who was as wealthy as Indra, and who never deviated from the path of visture. whose garland was of water lilies. Whose fame was great and whose paternal and maternal lines were matchless and pure and whose name was Taninayaga. He was made a chief of Neduntiva. See Sri Lankan Mudaliyars for the class of Mudaliyars created by the British administrators during 19th century Sri Lanka.

Sengunthar/Kaikolar

See main article at Sengunthar The Kaikolars also called as Sengunthar, are a large Tamil people in the states of Southern India[19]. Historically, there were seventy-two subdivisions (nadu or desams). Their name comes from the Tamil words "kai" (hand) and "kol" (shuttle used in looming or spear). They consider the different parts of the loom to represent various gods and sages. They are also known as Sengunthar, which means a red dagger in Tamil. During Chola rule Kaikolars served as soldiers and were called "Terinja kaikolar padai". (Terinja means "known" in Tamil and Padai means "regiment"), so "terinja-kaikolar padai" were the personal bodyguards. Kaikkolars were militarised during the Chola empire and formed a major part of the Chola army from 8th century to 13th century. There were no Kaikolar army before or after the Chola empire. Kaikkolar formed merchant groups and maintained a military unit to protect the merchants. They formed many regiments in the Chola army. Kaikolars were prominent members of Tamil society even during the 10th century AD during Chola rule. Smarakesarit-terinja-Kaikkolar and Vikramasingat-terinja-Kaikkolar derived their names from possible titles of Parantaka Udaiyar-Gandaradittatterinja-Kaikkolar must have been the name of a regiment called after king Gandaraditya, the father of Uttama-Chola. Singalantaka-terinda-Kaikkolar (a regiment named after Singalantaka i.e. Parntaka I) Danatonga-terinja-Kaikkola (regiment or group). The early writing of the record and the surname Danatunga of Paranataka I suggests its assignment to his reign. Muttavalperra seems to indicate some special honour or rank conferred on the regiment by the king.

Nanjil Mudali

Nanjil Mudali is another group of people who have Mudali surname. They belong to Nanjil nadu in Kanyakumari district.

Mudaliars of Bangalore

Mudaliars constitute a significant percentage of the population in South Bangalore (surrounding Ulsoor Lake, MG Road, High grounds). Many well-known buildings on MG Road & surrounding areas of Infantry Road and Kamaraj Road are still owned by Mudaliars (e.g - Gangaram's, Vimal Chambers). The famous "Attara Kachheri" or the red court house that stands opposite of Vidhana Sauda was built by Rai Bahadur Arcot Narayansamy Mudaliar. Palatial homes surrounding Windsor Manor (5 star hotel) are even today owned & inhabited by affluent Mudaliar families. The Bangalore Exhibition is usually conducted on the RBANMS grounds in Ulsoor which is owned by Rai Bahadur Arcot Narrainswamy Mudaliar trust. The trust has several schools and colleges affiliated to it.

Gatti mudalis of Taramangalam

REDIRECT Gatti Mudalis
Notable Mudaliars

Saints

Vaayilar Nayanar: One of the 63 Saivite Nayanars

Kings & Lords

Thalavai Ariyanadha Mudaliyar - Prime Minister of Viswanatha Nayak
Kanthappa mudaliar - land lord, ruled an island under ariya kings government
Pachaiyappa Mudaliar - 18th century dubash of Madras. His name is associated with Pachaiyappa's College.

Mudaliar

Mudaliar also Mudaliyar, Mudali and Moodley is a title used by Tamil castes. It is derived from the honorary title Mudali meaning a person of first rank in in the Tamil language which was bestowed upon top-ranking bureaucratic officials and army officers in medieval South India[1]. The surname is generally prevalent among Indian Tamils and the Tamil diaspora though it is also used in other parts of South India.


Etymolgy


The word Mudaliar means first citizens or first ones and is used to denote a Vellalar subcaste. The caste currently falls under a Backward Caste classification. The word Mudali was also used to refer to a position held in a Nakarattar firm as it applies to other non-Vellalar castes. It has been recorded that in the Nayak period, titles such as "Pillai" or "Mudali" might have also been used by Brahmins.


History


Karikalarikala divided Thondaimandalam into 24 Kottams and parcelled it out to the Vellala Chiefs, awarding them the title Mudali or Mudaliyar literally meaning The first citizens or first ones after his son Athondai had won the battle against Kurumbars.
Some of the Mudali clans of Thondaimandalam migrated to Sri Lanka during the period of medieval poet Kambar. For example, some of the Tamils in Ceylon trace their lineage to this group some of whom had become saints called Nayanars. The book: The Tamils in Early Ceylon By C. Sivaratnam traces some of the Mudaliyars in Ceylon to Thaninayaka Mudaliyar (among other), a rich Saiva Velalar who emigrated to Ceylon from Tondaimandalam
Maanadukanda Mudali, a Vellala king of Thondai Nadu had shed over kamban a shower of gold for his work of Erezhupatu, a literary work praising agriculture. Taninayaga, a Vellala of Seyur was made the chief of Neduntiva.
There have been other accounts like for example in the 17th century a leading Muslim trader Marakkayar was given the title Mudali Pillai by the Nayak king of Madurai.
Rajah of Cochin was also awarded Mudali title according to the book "Jews in India" by Thomas A. Timberg.
Castes such as Agamudayars also had used Mudali title from historical times as they had served in the regiments.
The usage of the title is prevalent, though to a lesser extent, among Desigar, Chozhia Vellalar and Karaiyar.

Castes with Mudaliar title


Mudaliar was used to represent a Vellala subcaste and was also used as a surname of the people belonging to various castes or as a caste title.
The following castes using the Mudaliar title are classified as Forward castes by the Government of Tamil Nadu

Thondaimandala Saiva Vellalar


The Thondaimandala Mudaliar or Thondaimandala Saiva Vellalar are a high ranking caste in the state of Tamil Nadu, India[18]. They are the original homogeneous group of Mudaliars who were settled in Thondaimandalam or Thondai Nadu in South India by Chola King, Karikala Chola[7][19][20][21]. When Karikala Chola annexed Thondai nadu and gave it to his son Athondai, he divided Thondaimandalam into 24 Kottams and parcelled it out to the Vellala Chiefs, awarding them the title Mudali or Mudaliyar literally meaning The first citizens or first ones. They are feudal lords and major landowners in the Thondaimandalam area which includes the present day areas of Chennai, Chengalpet, Kanchipuram, and Vellore[7]. A significant population of Thondaimandala Saiva Vellala Mudaliars have also migrated to other areas such as Madurai and Tirunelveli. Dalavoy Ariyanatha Mudaliar, the Velala General of Viswanatha Nayak also settled some of them in areas outside of Thondaimandalam. They are endogamous and inter-marriage with other Mudaliars is quite rare. Their mother tongue is Tamil . They have a long history of ardent Saiva devotees called Nayanmars. Sekkizhar, the author of the Tamil epic Periyapuranam hailed from this community.

Thondaimandala Kondaikatti Vellalar


Tradition suggests that this group were the first Vellalar groups that were settled in Thondaimandalam by Adondai Chakravarti after overthrowing the Kurumbar sovereignty. Adondai Chakravarti is described in various ways: a) as a lieutenant in the Chola empire, b) as the son of ancient Chola King Kokkili and a Naga princess, c) as the illegitimate son of Rajendra Kulotunga Chola I and a palace attendant, d) son of Karikala Chola. This claim appears blurred due to the ambiguous identity of Athondai Chakravarti and the time of such settlement. There are conflicting sources, some that say, the settlement was in 7th or 8th century AD and others that say that it was much later in 11th or 12th century AD. Nevertheless, this settlement is much later than Karikala Chola's settlement of Tondaimandalam. There were many Mirasidars and Zamindars belonging to this group. They are mainly concentrated in Chennai, Kanchipuram and Vellore districts.

The following castes using the Mudaliar title are classified as Backward castes by the Government of Tamil Nadu,

Agamudaiya Mudaliar


See the main article at Agamudaya Mudaliar
Agamudaya Mudaliar were using the Mudaliar title as early as the 13th century. One Kayiladamudaiyan alias Solakon-Pallavaraiyar from Kulattur in Tiruvindalur nadu is said to have held the office of Mudali in the 13th century. Their presence is significant in the Northern districts of Tamil Nadu.

Arcot, Thuluva Vellalar


See the main article at Thuluva Vellalar
Thuluva Vellalar or Tuluva or Tulumar is a sub-caste of Vellalars and were immigrants from the Tulunad, a part of the modern district of South Canara. A King named Athondai Chakravarthy had brought down the people of Thuluva Vellalar to the present day Thondaimandalam of Tamil Nadu. Athondai Chakravarthy had established his rule over Northern Tamil Nadu after winning the battle over the Kurumbar. This is the reason that part of North Tamil Nadu was named as Thondaimandalam, named after this victorious king. It has also been noted that Athondai Chakravarthy had brought Vellalars from Srisailam to settle down at Thondaimandalam.

2 comments:

  1. Please give me more information on the historical sources or literature (other than Sivaretnam) where I can get more information on the migration of Thaninayagam from India to Sri Lanka and his descendants.Mala

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    Replies
    1. I was told that my father hails from Thaninayagam Mudaliyar of Delft. I know my Great Great grand father is from the island of Delft (Sri Lanka). But we are catholics from Jaffna. I do not have any way of verifying the facts. My grand father -pulavar V. Mariampillai written plays (Nattu Kootthu) such as' Vijaya Manoharan', 'Mariathasan' etc.
      His works were published by his nephew M V Asirvatham well known printer publisher in Jaffna, and a retired teacher. In these books the preface makes reference to the author's ancestoy where I remember reading that he hails from the Thaninayagam Mudhaliyar family. I came across this link when I googled for Thaninayagam Mudaliyar. I would be interested to know more about his history too.
      I was born in and educated at Jaffna (St Patrick's College); now living in Australa.

      Dan

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