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This article is about Shaivite poets of Tamil Nadu. For the ethnic group, see Nayanar (Nair subcaste). For other uses of the name, see Nayanmar.
The four member team collectively called the Nalvars: (from left) Sambandar, Appar, Sundarar, Manikkavacakar.

The Nayanars, or Nayanmars (Tamil: நாயன்மார்கள்), were devotional Saint-Poets of Shiva in Tamil Nadu. This branch of Eastern-World poets were active between 600 C.E. and 1100 C.E. The Tamil Śhaiva hagiography, Periya Puranam, was a volume of the Tirumurai that was written during the 13th century C.E. that narrates the history of each of 63 Nayanars and 9 Thokai Adiyars.

Sundarar's 9th century work, Thiruthoṇdar thogai, lists 63 Shaiva saints[1] but does not describe any of the legends that have been associated with them. In the 10th century C.E., Nambiyandar Nambi composed the Tirutoṇṭar Antādi, a sequence of interlocking verses, whose title can be rendered as the Necklace of Verses on the Lord's Servants. In his work, Nambi adds Sundarar and his parents to the sequence. This eventually creates what is now the canonical list of 63 saints, and each saint is described with a brief sketch of his legend.

Nayanars were from various backgrounds ranging from kings and soldiers to Dalits. The foremost Nayanmars were Appar, Sundarar, Thirughana Sambandar, and Manikka vasagar

[2][citation needed]. Together with the twelve Vaishnava Alvars, the Nayanars are sometimes considered to be South India's 75 Apostles of Bhakti. This is because of their importance in the rise of the Hindu Bhakti movement.[3]

They praised 275 of this deity's most holy temple abodes including the Paadal Petra Sthalams, of the Shiva Sthalams, in India.

The sixty-three Nayanmars[edit]

The 63 Nayanmars in a Shiva temple
Kannappa Nayanar
  1. Adipaththar
  2. Aiyadigal Kadavarkon Nayanar
  3. Amaraneedi Nayanar
  4. Anaya Nayanar
  5. Atputhi Adigal
  6. Arivattaya Nayanar
  7. Chandeshvara Nayanar
  8. Dandi Adigal Nayanar
  9. Enathinathar
  10. Eripaththa Nayanar
  11. Eyarkon Kalikkaama Nayanar
  12. Gananatha Nayanar
  13. Idankazhi Nayanar
  14. Ilayankudi Maranar
  15. Isaignaniyaar
  16. Iyarpagaiar
  17. Kari Nayanar
  18. Kalikkamba Nayanar
  19. Kaliya Nayanar
  20. Kanampulla Nayanar
  21. Kannappa Nayanar
  22. Karaikkal Ammaiyar
  23. Kazharchinga Nayanar
  24. Kotpuliyar Nayanar
  25. Kulachirai Nayanar
  26. Kungiliyak Kalaya Nayanar
  27. Manakkanychaara Nayanar
  28. Mangayarkkarasiyar - a Chola Princess, the Queen of the Pandya king Ninra Seer Nedumaara Nayanar
  29. Meiporul Nayanar – Cheti Nadu King
  30. Manikkavacakar - Maruthuvar(Navithar)
  31. Munayaduvaar Nayanar
  32. Murkha Nayanar
  33. Murti Nayanar
  34. Muruga Nayanar
  35. Nami Nandi Adigal
  36. Nandanar Thirunalai Povar Nayanar
  37. Narasinga Muniyaraiyar Nayanar
  38. Nesa Nayanar
  39. Ninra Seer Nedumaara Nayanar – Pandya king, and former Jain
  40. Perumizhalai Kurumba Nayanar
  41. Pugal Cholar, Chola Monarch
  42. Pugazh Thunai Nayanar -commander of the Chola dynasty
  43. Pusalar
  44. Rudra Pasupathi Nayanar
  45. Saakkiya nayanar
  46. Sadaiya Nayanar
  47. Sambandar (Tirugnaana Sambandar)
  48. Saththi Nayanar
  49. Seruthtunai Nayanar
  50. Sirappuli Nayanar
  51. Siruthondar
  52. Somaachi Maara Nayanar
  53. Sundarar
  54. Tiru Kurippu Thonda Nayanar
  55. Thiruneelakandar
  56. Tirumoolar
  57. Tirunavukkarasar, popularly known as Appar, Vellala
  58. Tiruneela Nakkar
  59. Tirunilakanda Yaazpaanar
  60. Vaayilaar
  61. Viranminda nayanar

Sakya Nayanar was a former Buddhist and Kutruva Nayanar was a former Jain.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Dr R. Nagasamy. Siva Bhakthi. Chapter 2.
  2. ^ Sivananda, Sri Swami. "Sixty-Three Nayanar Saints". dlshq. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  3. ^ "Free Online Dictionary". Babylon. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  4. ^ Srinivasan, T.A. (17 October 2003). "Divine home of the Saint-Poetess". The Hindu. Retrieved 23 May 2014.