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Seshayya sastri.jpg
Sir A. Seshayya Sastri
Regions with significant populations
Chola Nadu region of Tamil Nadu, Chennai
Brahmin Tamil
Related ethnic groups
Iyer, Tamil people

Vathima are a subsect of Iyers from the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Being Iyers, they are all Pancha Dravida Brahmins of the Smartha sect who follow the Advaita philosophy propounded by Adi Shankaracharya.[1]


The Vathima are sub-divided into

  • Pathinettu Gramathu Vāthima or Vāthima of the eighteen villages
  • Udayalur
  • Nannilam and
  • Rathamangalam
  • Allur


Geographical distribution[edit]

Due to their geographic concentration, it is noted that they tended to be isolated and had an insular culture.[3] As a result, they also tended to be very late in their adoption of the English language and of western culture in general.[4] The insular culture and resultant intermarriage can result in a high degree of consanguinity amongst Vathimas.[5]

Historical Occupation[edit]

In ancient times, the most prevalent profession among the Vathimas was moneylending. Vathima women tended to work as well, either in farming, mat making or moneylending. [2] They were also known for their scholarship in classical Hindu literature. [6]

Famous Vathimas[edit]

See also[edit]