Thondaman was an Indian dynasty.
The origins of the Thondaiman derive from the state of Pudkottai, which was created by Raghunatha Thondaiman.
Raghunatha Kilavan Setupati of Ramnad (1673–1708) married Kathali Nachiar the sister of Thondaiman, he appointed his brother in law Raghunatha Thondaiman as a chief of the district of Pudukottai. Raghunatha Thondaiman was earlier ruling Thirumayam. In appreciation of Raghunatha Tondaman's services, Raghunatha Kilavan Setupati has given Pudukkottai as an honour for his services.
In later centuries, the Thondaiman rulers, while nominally feudatories of the Ramnad state, often pursued an independent foreign policy, a trend common in all parts of India at that time. After the death of Raghunatha Kilavan Setupati he become ruler of Pudukottai.
After becoming the ruler of Pudukottai, Raghunatha Thondaiman fought against the Nayaks of Tanjore in support of the Nayaks of Madurai and conquered Thirukkattupalli a very important place. Then there was a direct clash between Thondaimans of Pudukottai and the Nayaks rulers of Tanjore. Thondaiman conquered the west of Thirukkattupalli.
The next ruler Raja Vijaya Reghunatha Raya Thondaiman he helped Arcot Nawab against Hyder Ali the ruler of Mysore. He was also loyal towards the British Government. After some time, when Hyder Ali’s army tried to enter into Pudukkottai, the Thondaiman’s army defeated them and drove Hyder’s army away. Thondaiman captured Kilanilai and Aranthangi. He helped the British Government against Tipu Sultan.
Pudukkotai finally came under formal British protection. This was arguably unavoidable, since the Thondaimans were much menaced in that period by a resurgent Mysore ruled by Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. Tipu Sultan had sought to leverage the power of the French against his British
List of Thondaman Kings
The Thondaman lineage:
- Raghunatha Raya Tondaiman (1686–1730)
- Vijaya Raghunatha Raya Tondaiman I (1730–1769)
- Raya Raghunatha Tondaiman (1769 – Dec 1789)
- Vijaya Raghunatha Tondaiman (Dec 1789 – February 1, 1807)
- Vijaya Raghunatha Raya Tondaiman II (February 1, 1807 – June 1825)
- Raghunatha Tondaiman (June 1825 – July 13, 1839)
- Ramachandra Tondaiman (July 13, 1839 – April 15, 1886)
- Marthanda Bhairava Tondaiman (April 15, 1886 – May 28, 1928)
- Rajagopala Tondaiman (October 28, 1928 – March 4, 1948)
- Lists of Inscriptions, and Sketch of the Dynasties of Southern India By Robert Sewell, Archaeological Survey of Southern India