Chithalai Chathanar

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Sattanar or Chithalai Sathanar (Tamil: சாத்தனார், cītalai cāttanār) was the Tamil poet who composed the epic Manimekalai.


Pronounced Sa-tha-naar, the name is derived from (Tamil: சாத்து, sāttu) meaning Buddhist monk.[1] Applying this principle to the name Maturai Kulavāṇikan Cāttan, the author of Manimekalai, we see that the two appellations Maturai and Kulavanikan were prefixed to his name in order to distinguish him from another poet of Maturai with the same name and from a third who lived elsewhere. Several examples could be cited of this system of nomenclature which prevailed during the early days.[2]

Author of Maṇimekalai[edit]

Vaiyapuri Pillai sees him along with Ilango Adigal as developing two divergent strands of the Chilampu legend that forms the basis for both Cilapatikaram and Manimekalai.[3] He is seen as an expert in both orthodox and heterodox systems of Indian philosophy and as an advocate of Buddhist philosophy.[4] It is seen that Maṇimekhalai was written after the Tirukkural was composed, because there are two verses from the Tirukkural quoted in Manimekalai.[5][6]


  1. ^ Cō. Na Kantacāmi (1978). Buddhism as Expounded in Manimekalai. Annamalai University. p. 393. 
  2. ^ University of Ceylon Review (Volumes 6-8 ed.). 1948. p. 97. 
  3. ^ Journal of the Institute of Asian Studies (Volume 9 ed.). Institute of Asian Studies. 1991. p. 35. 
  4. ^ Tamil Studies (Volume 4 ed.). International Institute of Tamil Historical Studies. 1984. 
  5. ^ Hisselle Dhammaratana,Buddhism in South India, Buddhist Publication Society, Kandy, 1964. Available at Buddhist Publication Society Online Library [1]
  6. ^ Rao Bahadur Krishnaswāmi Aiyangar, Maṇimekhalai in its Historical Setting, London, 1928. Available at [2]