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The Tondaiman family were Tamil rulers of the ancient Tondai Nadu (Tondaimandalam) division of Tamilakkam in South India. Their capital was at Kanchipuram. [1]


They ruled with the Pallava dynasty, which controlled northern Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh and had its capital at Kanchipuram. Hundreds of records and edicts exist pertaining to the Tondaiman rulers of Chola dynasty.

Sangam literature

Ruler Tondaiman Ilandirayan was mentioned in Purananuru (புறநானூறு) (in one of the poems written by Avvaiyar) as a king confronting Adhiaman; battle was avoided by the tactics of Avvaiyaar. [2] He is said to be the founder of Pallava dynasty. [3] Pathupaattu (பத்துப்பாட்டு) a sangam literature work mentioned that Tondaiman Ilandriyan ruled th Kanchipuram town before 2500 years. [4]

Chola Empire

The Tondaiman title was borne by various chiefs in the Chola empire, notable ones being Karunakara Tondaiman and Naralokaviran alias Porkoyil Tondaiman who served as generals under Kulottunga I. [5]

The poet Kambar wrote Silaiyezhupathu about Karunagara Tondaiman. [6]


Aranthangi Tondaimans

The Aranthangi Tondaimans ruled Aranthangi from the 15th to the 18th centuries in southern Tamil Nadu. (As per the copper plates of Tondaiman released by Tamil University of Tanjore). There are references to the Aranthangi Tondaimans in temple inscriptions at Avudayarkovil, Alapiranthan, Palaiyavanam, Pillaivayal, Aranthangi, Kovilur, Paramandur, Palankarai, Piranmalai, Thiruvarankulam and Kurumbur. Similarly, the Aranthangi Tondaimans were an independent line of chieftains ruling from Aranthangi; they flourished about 200 years before the rule of the Thondaman dynasty of Pudukottai (which began about 1640). [7]

The Aranthangi Tondaimans were the chief patrons of the Avudayarkovil temple, and liberally donated to its maintenance (as indicated by copper plates in the possession of the Tiruvavaduthurai Adheenam). They donated land to the Tiruvarur, Rameswaram, Kanchipuram and Benares temples. About 25 copper plates indicating grants from the Aranthangi Tondaimans have been recorded so far; 16 are in the Thiruvavaduthurai Adheenam. Their direct descendants were the Palayavanam Zamin "Vanangamudi Pandarathar". [8] The Thondaiman kings of the Pudukkottai principality who came to power in the 17th century were their descendants. [8]


  1. "Southern Indian Kingdoms". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 6 September 2016.
  2. History of the Eastern Chalukyas of Vengi, 610-1210 A.D., page 446.
  3. Vijaya Ramaswamy (2007). Historical Dictionary of the Tamils.
  4. P. V. L. Narasimha Rao (2008). Kanchipuram: Land of Legends, Saints and Temples.
  5. S. R. Balasubrahmanyam; B. Natarajan; Balasubrahmanyan Ramachandran. Later Chola Temples: Kulottunga I to Rajendra III (A.D. 1070-1280), Parts 1070-1280. Mudgala Trust, 1979 - Architecture - 470 pages. p. 20.
  6. Silaiyelupathu (in Tamil) Retrieved 2012-07-17.
  7. C.Sivaratnam: The Tamils in early Ceylon, page 116
  8. 1 2 "MANUAL OF PUDUKKOTTAI STATE VOLUME II". 2002. pp.  721.

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