Nayak (title)

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Nayak or Naik is a historic title conferred to Sardars, Governors of the feudatories in medieval times.

As a title[edit]

  • Nayak title was given by Vijayanagara rulers to their feudatories, who later established themselves as independent kingdoms as Nayak kingdoms after the downfall of Vijayanagara Empire in South India.[1]
  • Nayak title was given to the ministers of the Goan Kingdom.
  • Naik title was conferred to the Hindu Sardars by rulers of Maratha Empire.[2]
  • Naik title was used by the Raja's of Phaltan State.
  • Even the British has adapted this title for their army personnel. Nayak was a title which was in force in Mysore especially for the army personnel of distinction.[3][self-published source]

As a surname[edit]

Today, the surname Naik or Nayak is used by various castes and ethnic groups across India[4] including Keerthi Nayak

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kathleen Gough (2008). Rural Society in Southeast India. Cambridge University Press. p. 436. ISBN 9780521040198.
  2. ^ Shivaji, the Great Maratha, Volume 1. Genisys Publishing. 2002. p. 116. ISBN 9788177552850.
  3. ^ Anwar Haroon (2013). Kingdom of Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan: Sultanat e Khudadad. Xlibris Corporation. p. 15. ISBN 9781483615363.
  4. ^ Kumar Suresh Singh (2002). People of India: Introduction. Oxford University Press. p. 54. ISBN 9780195644449.
  5. ^ Kumar Suresh Singh (1993). Tribal Ethnography, Customary Law, and Change. Concept Publishing Company. p. 249. ISBN 9788170224716.
  6. ^ Shanti Sadiq Ali (1996). The African Dispersal in the Deccan: From Medieval to Modern Times. Orient Blackswan. p. 226. ISBN 9788125004851.
  7. ^ Pra. Pā Śiroḍakara, H. K. Mandal (1993). People of India: Goa. Anthropological Survey of India. p. 225. ISBN 9788171547609.
  8. ^ Anupama Rao (2009). The Caste Question: Dalits and the Politics of Modern India. University of California Press. p. 315. ISBN 9780520257610.
  9. ^ Chockalingam Joe Arun. Constructing Dalit Identity. p. 43. ISBN 9788131600818.
  10. ^ A.Vijay Kumari. Social Change Among Balijas: Majority Community of Andhra Pradesh. M D Publications. p. 89. ISBN 9788175330726.