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Piddan Korran,[1] also known as Korra (Tamil:கொற்றன்/ கொற்ற) (c. 10 BC-90 AD) was a Tamil commander in chief of the Chera Dynasty under the King Makkotai, who was a chieftain of the ancient Tamil capital and port town of Kudiramalai, the "Horse Mountain/Hill", in the 1st century CE.[2] Kudiramalai was the capital of the ancient Jaffna kingdom.[citation needed]


His full name was sometimes credited as Pittan-Korran, following Tamil naming conventions detailed in the Tolkappiyam.[3] His father was Pittan, another famous Chera chief. Korran and his father Pittan are mentioned as part of a genealogy of Chera kings in the Pugalur inscriptions of Karur district in the 2nd century AD, the ancient capital of the Chera dynasty.[4]

Korran ruled Kudiramalai alongside two other chieftains, Neduman Anci's son Elini and Kumanan.[citation needed] His contemporaries, Athiyamān Nedumān Añci of Tagadur and Pajayan Maran of Madurai belonged to the same Tamil horseman tribe and were Velir aristocrats. Korran likely belonged to the Malayaman family dynasty of the Velir royal house, whose royal emblem was the horse.

Korran oversaw the trade of Jaffna Tamils with the early Pandyans, Cholas, Kalingas, the Nakas, the Cheras, Romans, Phoenicians, the Seres and Egyptians at Kudiramalai and across the Jaffna Vanni country.[5] Korran's rule is described at length in the Purananuru and he is eulogised in several poems of Sangam literature.[6]

In the Sangam period, Tamil kings and chiefs were known to have brought horses in water craft to the Jaffna Kingdom.[citation needed] Korran brought horses to the battlefield for the first time. He earned the epithet கட்டுமான் கொற்றன் (Kattuman Korran) meaning "Horseman Korran" due to his love of horse riding. Korran was a brilliant bowman, typical of the inhabitants of the Chera kingdom whose royal emblem was the bow.[citation needed] Korran was an avid horseman and great patron of poetry.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kanakasabhai, V. (1989). The Tamils Eighteen Hundred Years Ago. p. 107. 
  2. ^ Kolappa Pillay Kanakasabhapathi Pillay (1963), South India and Ceylon. Publisher: University of Madras. pp. 39
  3. ^ R. Nagaswamy (1995), Roman Karur: : A Peep Into Tamils' Past. Publisher: B. Prakashan
  4. ^ Iravatham Mahadevan. (2003). Early Tamil epigraphy from the earliest times to the sixth century A.D.. Harvard University Press
  5. ^ S. Krishnarajah (2004). University of Jaffna
  6. ^ V. Kanakasabhai. The Tamils Eighteen Hundred Years Ago. pp.110