प्राचिन काळापासून तामिळनाडूचा प्रदेश कायम मानवी वस्तीत आहे आणि तामिळनाडूचा इतिहास आणि तामिळ लोकांची संस्कृती जगातील सर्वात प्राचीन आहे. त्याच्या संपूर्ण इतिहासामध्ये, पॅलीओलिथिक युगाच्या सुरुवातीच्या काळापासून आधुनिक काळापर्यंत हा प्रदेश विविध बाह्य संस्कृतींसह अस्तित्वात आहे. इतिहासातील तुलनेने अल्प कालावधी वगळता, तामिळ प्रदेश बाह्य व्यापारापासून स्वतंत्र राहिला आहे.
चेरा, चोल, पांड्या आणि पल्लव ही चार प्राचीन तामिळ साम्राज्ये प्राचीन मूळ होती. जगातील सर्वात जुनी अस्तित्त्वात असलेल्या साहित्याच्या वाढीस हातभार लावून त्यांनी एकत्र या अद्वितीय संस्कृती आणि भाषेसह सर्वत्र राज्य केले. रोमन साम्राज्याशी त्यांचे व्यापक सागरी व्यापारी संपर्क होते. हे तीन राजवंश एकमेकांवर सतत संघर्ष करीत होते आणि जमिनीवर वर्चस्व मिळविण्याच्या प्रयत्नात होते. तिसर्या शतकात काळभराच्या स्वारीमुळे तीन राज्ये विस्थापित करून तेथील पारंपारिक क्रांती विस्कळीत झाली. पांड्या व पल्लव यांच्या पुनरुत्थानामुळे पारंपारिक साम्राज्या परत आल्यामुळे या व्यापार्यांचा पाडाव करण्यात आला. नवव्या शतकात पल्लव आणि पांड्यांना पराभूत करून पुन्हा एकदा अस्पष्टतेतून बाहेर पडलेल्या चोलांनी एक महान शक्ती बनली आणि संपूर्ण दक्षिण द्वीपकल्पात आपले साम्राज्य वाढवले. चोला साम्राज्याने त्याच्या उंचीवर बंगालच्या उपसागरामध्ये सुमारे 3,600,000 चौरस कि.मी. (1,389,968 चौरस मैल) विस्तार केला. चोल नौदल दक्षिण-पूर्व आशियातील श्री विजया साम्राज्यावर पडून होता.
वायव्येकडील मुस्लिम सैन्याच्या हल्ल्यामुळे उर्वरित भारताच्या राजकीय परिस्थितीत तीव्र बदल तामिळनाडूच्या इतिहासामध्ये एक महत्त्वाचा टप्पा ठरला. चौदाव्या शतकादरम्यान तीन प्राचीन राजवंशांचा नाश होत असताना, तामिळ देश विजयनगर साम्राज्याचा भाग बनला. या साम्राज्याखाली तेलगू भाषिक नायक राज्यपालांनी तामिळ भूमीवर राज्य केले. मराठ्यांच्या थोड्या थोड्या काळाने युरोपियन व्यापार करणाऱ्या कंपन्यांना मार्ग मोकळा झाला, जे सतराव्या शतकादरम्यान दिसू लागले आणि अखेरीस तेथील देशी राज्यकर्त्यांपेक्षा अधिक सत्ता गाजविण्यास त्यांनी सुरुवात केली. बहुतेक दक्षिण भारताचा समावेश असलेल्या मद्रास प्रेसीडेंसीची निर्मिती अठराव्या शतकात झाली आणि ब्रिटीश ईस्ट इंडिया कंपनीने थेट राज्य केले. भारताच्या स्वातंत्र्यानंतर तामिळनाडू राज्य भाषिक सीमांच्या आधारे तयार केले गेले.
तामिळनाडू प्रदेशात अस्तित्वात असलेला पूर्व-ऐतिहासिक कालखंड सुमारे ,५००,००० इ. स. पूर्व पासून सुमारे ३००० इ. स. पूर्व पर्यंतचा असावा असा अंदाज आहे. खालच्या अश्मयुगीन अवस्थेच्या बहुतेक भागात माणसे विरळ जंगलाच्या झाकणाने किंवा गवताळ प्रदेशात नदीच्या खोलदाऱ्यांजवळ राहत होती. लोकसंख्येची घनता खूपच कमी होती आणि आतापर्यंत दक्षिण भारतात या खालच्या अश्मयुगीन संस्कृतीचे केवळ दोनच परिसर सापडले आहेत. यातील एक तामिळनाडूमधील चेन्नईच्या वायव्य भागात अतीरामपक्कम खोलदरी आहे. पुरातत्वशास्त्रीय संशोधनात उत्तर तामिळनाडूच्या आसपास प्राण्यांचे अवशेष आणि प्राचीन दगडांच्या अवजाराचा पुरावा सापडला आहे ज्याची तारीख इ.स.पू. ३००,००० च्या आसपास आहे. दक्षिण भारतातील माणसं 'होमो इरेक्टस' या प्रजातींशी संबंधित आहेत, या प्राचीन 'जुन्या पाषाणयुगात' अश्मयुगीन बराच काळ वास्तव्य करत होते, हाताच्या कुऱ्हाडी आणि चॉपर सारख्या क्रूड अवयवांचा वापर करून अन्नावर अवलंबून राहतात. त्याच्या गरजेनुसार सक्रियपणे वाढण्याऐवजी शिकार केली आणि एकत्रित झाले.
आधुनिक मानवांचा पूर्वज 'होमो सेपियन्स' जो सुमारे,५०,००० वर्षांपूर्वी दिसला होता तो अधिक विकसित झाला होता आणि विविध प्रकारचे दगड वापरून पातळ चकमक आणि ब्लेड सारखी साधने बनवू शकतो. सुमारे १०,००० वर्षांपूर्वीपासून मानवाने मायक्रोलिथिक टूल्स नावाची छोटी छोटी साधने बनविली. आरंभिक मानवांनी ही साधने तयार करण्यासाठी वापरली जाणारी सामग्री जैस्पर, अॅगेट, चकमक, क्वार्ट्ज. इ.स १९४९ मध्ये तिरुनेलवेली जिल्ह्यात संशोधकांना अशी मायक्रोलिथ सापडली. पुरातत्व पुरावा सूचित करतो की सूक्ष्म काळ ६००० ते ३००० इ.स.पू. दरम्यान होता.
तामिळनाडूमध्ये, नवपाषाण कालावधीचे आगमन इ.स.पूर्व २५०० च्या आसपास होते. नवपाषाण कालखंडातील मानवांनी दगडी पाट तयार करून पॉलिश करून बारीक आकारात दगडांची साधने बनविली. यावर प्राचीन लिखित एक नवपाषाण कुऱ्हाडीचे डोके तामिळनाडूमध्ये सापडले आहे. नवपाषाण मानव बहुतेक लहान सपाट डोंगरांवर किंवा लहान, अधिक किंवा कमी कायम वस्तींमध्ये असलेल्या तळांवर राहतात परंतु चरण्याच्या उद्देशाने नियमितपणे स्थलांतर करतात. त्यांनी मृतांना दफन केले किंवा खड्ड्यातच पुरले. काही विशिष्ट साधने किंवा शस्त्रे तयार करण्यासाठी ते तांबे देखील वापरण्यास सुरवात करीत होते.
लोह युग च्या काळात मानवाने साधने व शस्त्रे बनवण्यासाठी लोह वापरण्यास सुरवात केली. द्वीपकल्प भारतातील लोह युग संस्कृती मेगालिथिक दफनस्थळे चिन्हांकित आहे, जी अनेक शेकडो ठिकाणी आढळतात. काही उत्खनन आणि दफनभूमीच्या टायपॉलॉजी या दोन्ही तळांवर, असे सुचवले गेले आहे की उत्तरेकडून दक्षिणेस हळूहळू लोहयुगाच्या जागांचा प्रसार झाला. तिरुनेलवेली जिल्ह्यातील आदिकानल्लूर आणि उत्तर भारतामध्ये केलेल्या तुलनात्मक उत्खननात मेगालिथिक संस्कृतीच्या दक्षिण-पश्चिमेच्या स्थलांतराचा पुरावा मिळाला आहे.
मेगालिथिक दफन दफनांच्या अस्तित्वाचा सर्वात स्पष्ट पुरावा म्हणजे इ.स.पू. १००० च्या आसपासचे पुरावे आहेत, जे तामिळनाडूच्या विविध ठिकाणी, विशेषतः तिरुनेलवेलीपासून २ कि.मी. अंतरावर असलेल्या आदीचनाल्लूर येथे सापडले आहेत, जिथे भारतीय पुरातत्व सर्वेक्षणातील पुरातत्वज्ञांनी १५७ शोधून काढले. ज्यामध्ये १५ मानवी कवटी, सांगाडे आणि हाडे, तसेच हस, तांदळाचे धान्य, ज्वलंत तांदूळ आणि निओलिथिक सेल्ट (साधन) समाविष्ट आहे. एका कलशात लेखन आहे, जे भारतीय पुरातत्व सर्वेक्षणातील पुरातत्वशास्त्रज्ञांच्या म्हणण्यानुसार, तमिळ-ब्राह्मीच्या सुरुवातीच्या लिपीसारखे आहे आणि २८०० वर्षांपूर्वीच्या नियोलिथिक काळाची पुष्टी करतो. अधिक उत्खनन व अभ्यासासाठी आदीचनाल्लूर पुरातत्व साइट म्हणून जाहीर केले गेले आहे.
सामान्य युगापूर्वी तामिळनाडूच्या राजकीय परिस्थितीचा उल्लेख अशोकाच्या ३०० इ.स.पू. च्या आदेशात आणि १५० इ.स.पू. च्या हथिगुंपाच्या शिलालेखात स्पष्टपणे आढळतो. तामिळ देशातील सर्वात प्राचीन पुरावे म्हणजे पांड्या राजा कडुनगॉन (इ.स. ५६०-५९०) यांनी पांड्या देशातून काळभरासना विस्थापित केले.-- नीळकंठ शास्त्री, 'दक्षिण भारताचा इतिहास', pp 105, 137
हे सुद्धा पहा[संपादन]
प्राचीन तामिळनाडूत तीन राजशाही राज्य होते, ज्याचे नेतृत्व 'वेन्टार' असे राजे होते आणि अनेक आदिवासी सरदार होते, ज्याचे प्रमुख सरदार 'वेल' 'किंवा' 'वेलीर्स' म्हणतात. स्थानिक पातळीवर अजूनही 'किझर' किंवा 'मन्नार' नावाचे कुळ प्रमुख होते. इ.स.पू. तिसऱ्या शतकात डेक्कन हा मौर्य राज्याचा भाग होता आणि इ.स.पू. पहिल्या शतकाच्या मध्यभागी ते दुसर्या शतकापर्यंत याच भागात सातवाहन घराण्याचे राज्य होते. या उत्तर साम्राज्यांच्या नियंत्रणाबाहेर तामिळ भागाचे स्वतंत्र अस्तित्व होते. तामिळ राजे व सरदार बहुधा मालमत्तेवरून एकमेकांशी भांडतात. शाही दरबार बहुतेक अधिकार्यांच्या विभागण्याऐवजी सामाजिक जमण्याची ठिकाणे होती; ते संसाधनांच्या वितरणाची केंद्रे होती. हळूहळू राज्यकर्ते उत्तर भारतीय प्रभाव आणि वैदिक विचारधारेच्या जादूखाली येऊ लागले, ज्याने राज्यकर्त्याची स्थिती वाढविण्यासाठी बलिदानाच्या कामगिरीला प्रोत्साहन दिले.
चोळा, पांड्या आणि चेरास या तीन राजवंशांची नावे अशोकच्या स्तंभावर शिलालेखांमध्ये नमूद केली आहेत, जे अशोकाच्या अधीन नसले तरी त्याच्याशी मैत्रीपूर्ण अटी होती. कलिंग च्या राजाने खरावेला, ज्याने सुमारे इ.स.पू. १५० च्या आसपास राज्य केले, १०० हून अधिक वर्षांपासून अस्तित्त्वात असलेल्या तामिळ राज्यांच्या संघटनेच्या प्रसिद्ध हथीगुंफा शिलालेखात त्यांचा उल्लेख आहे.
करिकला चोळा आधीच्या चोळामध्ये सर्वात प्रसिद्ध होता. संगम साहित्यातील अनेक कवितांमध्ये त्यांचा उल्लेख आहे. नंतरच्या काळात करिकला हा अकराव्या आणि बाराव्या शतकाच्या शिलालेख आणि साहित्यिक कार्यात सापडलेल्या अनेक दंतकथांचा विषय होता. त्यांनी त्याच्या सरंजामशाहीच्या मदतीने हिमालय पर्यंत अखिल भारतीय विजय आणि कावेरी नदीकाठाचे बांधकाम त्याचे श्रेय दिले. संगम कवितेत त्यांच्या अनुपस्थितीमुळे हे आख्यायिका स्पष्ट आहेत. संगम काळाच्या अनेक कवितांमध्ये विख्यात झालेल्या कोसेनगानन हा आणखी एक प्रारंभीचा चोळा राजा होता. अगदी मध्ययुगीन काळात त्याला शैव संत बनवले गेले.
पांड्यांनी सुरुवातीच्या काळात भारतीय द्वीपकल्पाच्या दक्षिणेकडील टोकावरील कोर्काई या बंदरातून राज्य केले आणि नंतरच्या काळात ते मदुराई येथे गेले. संगम साहित्यात तसेच या काळात ग्रीक व रोमन स्त्रोतांनीही पांड्यांचा उल्लेख आहे. मेगास्थनेस त्याच्या 'इंदिका' मध्ये पांड्या साम्राज्याचा उल्लेख करतात. पंड्यांनी मदुरै, तिरुनेलवेली आणि दक्षिण केरळमधील काही भागांवर नियंत्रण ठेवले. ग्रीस आणि रोमनशी त्यांचे व्यापारिक संपर्क होते.. तामिळकामच्या इतर राज्यांसह त्यांनी एलाममधील तामिळ व्यापाऱ्यांशी व्यापारिक संपर्क आणि वैवाहिक संबंध राखले. संगम साहित्यात अनेक पंड्या राजांचा उल्लेख आढळतो. त्यापैकी नेडुंजेलियान, 'तलैयालंगनमचा विजयी', तर आणखी एक नेदुंजेलियान 'आर्य सैन्याचा विजय' आणि मुद्दुकुदिमी पेरुवुल्डी 'अनेक बलिदानांचे' विशेष उल्लेख पात्र आहेत. अकनानूरू आणि पुराणानुरु संग्रहात सापडलेल्या अनेक छोट्या कवितांच्या व्यतिरिक्त, 'मथुराइकांकी' 'आणि' 'नेतुणालताई' '(' पट्टुपट्टू 'यांच्या संग्रहात) दोन प्रमुख कामे आहेत. हे संगम युगातील पांड्य साम्राज्यातील समाज आणि व्यावसायिक क्रियाकलापांची झलक देते. इ.स. तिसऱ्या शतकाच्या अखेरीस काळभ्रसच्या आक्रमणानंतर प्रारंभिक पांड्या राज्य अस्पष्टतेत गेले.
दक्षिण भारताच्या पश्चिमेला किंवा मलबार किनारपट्टीवर आधुनिक केरळ राज्य करणारे चेरा राजवंशाचे राज्य आहे. त्यांची समुद्राशी जवळीक असल्यामुळे त्यांनी आफ्रिकेबरोबर व्यापार करण्यास पसंती दिली. केरळमधील पुरातन प्रदेश असलेल्या केरळ राज्यातील लोक त्याच भाषेत बोलले आणि उर्वरित तामिळ देशाशी त्यांचा व्यापक संवाद झाला. हे फक्त इ.स. नवव्या किंवा दहाव्या शतकाकडे होते, तमिळ भाषेत आर्य यांच्या संस्कृत प्रभावामुळे त्यांची स्वतंत्र ओळख बदलली, त्यानंतर एक नवीन भाषा विकसित होऊ लागली.
या सुरुवातीच्या राज्यांनी प्राचीन काळात अस्तित्त्वात असलेल्या काही तामिळ साहित्याच्या वाढीसाठी प्रायोजित केले. संगम साहित्य म्हणून ओळखले जाणारे शास्त्रीय तामिळ साहित्य २०० ईसापूर्व आणि ३०० ईसापूर्व दरम्यानच्या कालावधीस दिले जाते. भावनिक आणि भौतिक विषयाशी संबंधित असलेल्या संगम साहित्याच्या कवितांचे वर्गीकरण करण्यात आले आणि ते मध्ययुगीन काळात विविध काल्पनिक संग्रहात संग्रहित झाले. या संगम कवितांमध्ये सुपीक जमीन आणि विविध व्यावसायिक गटात एकत्र जमलेल्या लोकांचे चित्र रेखाटले आहे. राज्याचे कामकाज आणि राज्यकर्त्याच्या अधिकारांची मर्यादा प्रस्थापित ऑर्डर धर्माच्या अनुषंगाने मर्यादीत असली तरी तेथील राज्य हे वंशपरंपरागत राजे होते. लोक आपल्या राजांबद्दल निष्ठावान होते, भटक्या फलक, संगीतकार आणि नृत्य यांनी उदार राजांच्या राजदरबारात जमले होते. प्राचीन तामिळ संगीत आणि नृत्य अत्यंत विकसित आणि लोकप्रिय होते. संगम कवितेत विविध प्रकारच्या वाद्यांचा उल्लेख आढळतो. या काळात नृत्य करण्याच्या दक्षिणेकडील व उत्तरेकडील शैलींचे एकत्रिकरण या काळात सुरू झाले आणि ते 'सिलापटीकरम' या महाकाव्यामध्ये पूर्णपणे प्रतिबिंबित झाले.
अंतर्गत आणि बाह्य व्यापार व्यवस्थित व सक्रिय होता. पुरातत्वशास्त्र आणि साहित्य या दोहोंमधील पुरावे यवनसमवेत भरभराट परदेशी व्यापाराबद्दल बोलतात. पूर्व किनारपट्टीवरील पुहार बंदर शहर आणि दक्षिण भारताच्या पश्चिम किनाऱ्यावरील मुझिरी हे परदेशी व्यापाराचे साम्राज्य होते, जिथे मोठी जहाजे विचलित झाली होती आणि मौल्यवान वस्तूंची विक्री होते. हा व्यापार ई. स. दुसर्या शतकानंतर कमी होऊ लागला आणि रोमन साम्राज्य आणि प्राचीन तामिळ देश यांच्यातील थेट संपर्क अरब आणि पूर्व आफ्रिकेच्या अक्समच्या साम्राज्याशी व्यापार करून बदलला. अंतर्गत व्यापारदेखील जोरदार होता आणि वस्तू विकल्या जात आणि बार्टरही केले. बहुसंख्य लोकसंख्येचा शेती हा मुख्य व्यवसाय होता आणि वंशपरंपरागत शेतीवाले वेल्लर हे बहुतेक जमिनीचे मालक होते.
संगम युग संपत आल्यानंतर जवळजवळ ३०० ते ६०० इ.स. पर्यंत तामिळ देशात घडणाऱ्या घटनांविषयी जवळजवळ संपूर्ण माहितीचा अभाव आहे. इ.स. ३०० च्या सुमारास काळभरास दिसल्याने संपूर्ण प्रदेश अस्वस्थ झाला. या लोकांचे वर्णन नंतरच्या साहित्यात 'दुष्कर्म करणारे' असे केले जाते ज्यांनी प्रस्थापित तामिळ राजांचा पाडाव केला आणि देशाचा ताबा मिळविला. त्यांच्या उत्पत्तीविषयी आणि त्यांच्या कारभाराविषयी तपशील अपुरी आहे. त्यांनी बरेच शिल्पकला किंवा स्मारके सोडली नाहीत. बौद्ध आणि जैन साहित्यातील विखुरलेल्या उल्लेखांचा त्यांच्यावरील माहितीचा एकमेव स्रोत आहे.
इतिहासकारांचा असा अंदाज आहे की हे लोक बौद्ध किंवा जैन धर्माचे अनुसरण करतात आणि इसवीसनाच्या सुरुवातीच्या काळात तामिळ प्रदेशातील बहुतांश रहिवाशांनी पाळलेल्या हिंदू आणि ब्राह्मण धर्मांचे प्रतिपक्ष होते.  परिणामी, ७ व्या आणि ८ व्या शतकात त्यांच्या विखुरलेल्या घटनेचे अनुसरण करणारे हिंदू विद्वान आणि लेखक यांनी त्यांच्या ग्रंथांमधील काही उल्लेख काढून टाकला असावा आणि सामान्यत: त्यांचा नियम नकारात्मक प्रकाशात आणायचा. कदाचित या कारणास्तवच, त्यांच्या राजवटीचा कालावधी 'डार्क एज'-- अॅन इंटररेग्नम म्हणून ओळखला जातो. काही सत्ताधारी कुटुंबे उत्तरेकडे स्थलांतरित झाली आणि त्यांना काळभरासपासून दूरच्या ठिकाणी enclaves आढळले. जैन धर्म आणि बौद्ध धर्म यांनी, समाजात खोलवर मुळे घेतली आणि नैतिक काव्याच्या मोठ्या शरीरास जन्म दिला.
लेखन फारच व्यापक झाले आणि तामिळ-ब्राह्मी लिपीतून विकसित झालेले वट्टेलुट्टू तामिळ लिहिण्यासाठी परिपक्व लिपी बनले.  While several anthologies were compiled by collecting bardic poems of earlier centuries, some of the epic poems such as the Cilappatikaram and didactic works such as the Tirukkural were also written during this period. The patronage of the Jain and Buddhist scholars by the Kalabhra kings influenced the nature of the literature of the period, and most of the works that can be attributed to this period were written by the Jain and Buddhist authors. In the field of dance and music, the elite started patronising new polished styles, partly influenced by northern ideas, in the place of the folk styles. A few of the earliest rock-cut temples belong to this period. Brick temples (known as kottam, devakulam, and palli) dedicated to various deities are referred to in literary works. Kalabhras were displaced around the 7th century by the revival of Pallava and Pandya power.
Even with the exit of the Kalabhras, the Jain and Buddhist influence still remained in Tamil Nadu. The early Pandya and the Pallava kings were followers of these faiths. The Hindu reaction to this apparent decline of their religion was growing and reached its peak during the later part of the seventh century. There was a widespread Hindu revival during which a huge body of Saiva and Vaishnava literature was created. Many Saiva Nayanmars and Vaishnava Alvars provided a great stimulus to the growth of popular devotional literature. Karaikkal Ammaiyar who lived in the sixth century CE was the earliest of these Nayanmars. The celebrated Saiva hymnists Sundaramurthi, Thirugnana Sambanthar and Thirunavukkarasar were of this period. Vaishnava Alvars such as Poigai Alvar, Bhoothathalvar and Peyalvar produced devotional hymns for their faith and their songs were collected later into the four thousand poems of Naalayira Divyap Prabhandham.
Age of empires (600–1300)[संपादन]
The medieval period of the history of the Tamil country saw the rise and fall of many kingdoms, some of whom went on to the extent of empires, exerting influences both in India and overseas. The Cholas who were very active during the Sangam age were entirely absent during the first few centuries. The period started with the rivalry between the Pandyas and the Pallavas, which in turn caused the revival of the Cholas. The Cholas went on to becoming a great power. Their decline saw the brief resurgence of the Pandyas. This period was also that of the re-invigorated Hinduism during which temple building and religious literature were at their best.
The Hindu sects Saivism and Vaishnavism became dominant, replacing the prevalence of Jainism and Buddhism of the previous era. Saivism was patronised more by the Chola kings and became more or less a state religion. Some of the earliest temples that are still standing were built during this period by the Pallavas. The rock-cut temples in Mamallapuram and the majestic Kailasanatha and Vaikuntaperumal temples of Kanchipuram stand testament to the Pallava art. The Cholas, utilising their prodigious wealth earned through their extensive conquests, built long-lasting stone temples including the great Brihadisvara temple of Thanjavur and exquisite bronze sculptures. Temples dedicated to Siva and Vishnu received liberal donations of money, jewels, animals, and land, and thereby became powerful economic institutions.
Tamil script replaced the vatteluttu script throughout Tamil Nadu for writing तमिळ. Both secular and religious literature flourished during the period. The Tamil epic, Kamban's Ramavatharam, was written in the 13th century. A contemporary of Kamban was the famous poetess Auvaiyar who found great happiness in writing for young children. The secular literature was mostly court poetry devoted to the eulogy of the rulers. The religious poems of the previous period and the classical literature of the Sangam period were collected and systematised into several anthologies. Sanskrit was patronised by the priestly groups for religious rituals and other ceremonial purposes. Nambi Andar Nambi, who was a contemporary of Rajaraja Chola I, collected and arranged the books on Saivism into eleven books called Tirumurais. The hagiology of Saivism was standardised in Periyapuranam by Sekkilar, who lived during the reign of Kulothunga Chola II (1133–1150 CE). Jayamkondar's Kalingattupparani, a semi-historical account on the two invasions of Kalinga by Kulothunga Chola I was an early example of a biographical work.
The seventh century Tamil Nadu saw the rise of the Pallavas under Mahendravarman I and his son Mamalla Narasimhavarman I. The Pallavas were not a recognised political power before the second century. It has been widely accepted by scholars that they were originally executive officers under the Satavahana kings. After the fall of the Satavahanas, they began to get control over parts of Andhra and the Tamil country. Later they had marital ties with the Vishnukundina who ruled over the Deccan. It was around 550 AD under King Simhavishnu that the Pallavas emerged into prominence. They subjugated the Cholas and reigned as far south as the Kaveri River. The Pallavas were at their finest during the reigns of Narasimhavarman I and Pallavamalla Nandivarman II. Pallavas ruled a large portion of South India with Kanchipuram as their capital. Dravidian architecture reached its peak during the Pallava rule. Narasimhavarman II built the Shore Temple which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many sources describe Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen school of Buddhism in China, as a prince of the Pallava dynasty.
During the sixth and the seventh centuries, the western Deccan saw the rise of the Chalukyas based in Vatapi. Pulakesi II (c.610–642) invaded the Pallava kingdom in the reign of Mahendravarman I. Narasimhavarman who succeeded Mahendravarman mounted a counter invasion of the Chalukya country and took Vatapi. The rivalry between the Chalukyas and the Pallavas continued for another 100 years until the demise of the Chalukyas around 750. The Chalukyas and Pallavas fought numerous battles and the Pallava capital Kanchipuram was occupied by Vikramaditya II during the reign of Nandivarman II. Nandivarman II had a very long reign (732–796). He led an expedition to the Ganga kingdom (south Mysore) in 760. Pallavas were also in constant conflict with the Pandyas and their frontier shifted along the river Kaveri. The Pallavas had the more difficult existence of the two as they had to fight on two fronts—against the Pandyas as wells as the Chalukyas.
Pandya Kadungon (560–590) is credited with the overthrow of the Kalabhras in the south. Kadungon and his son Maravarman Avanisulamani revived the Pandya power. Pandya Cendan extended their rule to the Chera country. His son Arikesari Parantaka Maravarman (c. 650–700) had a long and prosperous rule. He fought many battles and extended the Pandya power. Pandya was well known since ancient times, with contacts, even diplomatic, reaching the Roman Empire; during the 13th century of the Christian era Marco Polo mentioned it as the richest empire in existence.
After some decades of expansion, the Pandyan Empire was large enough to pose a serious threat to the Pallava power. Pandya Maravarman Rajasimha aligned with the Chalukya Vikramaditya II and attacked the Pallava king Nandivarman II. Varagunan I defeated the Pallavas in a battle on the banks of the Kaveri. The Pallava king Nandivarman sought to restrain the growing power of the Pandyas and went into an alliance with the feudal chieftains of Kongu and Chera countries. The armies met in several battles and the Pandya forces scored decisive victories in them. Pandyas under Srimara Srivallaba also invaded Sri Lanka and devastated the northern provinces in 840.
The Pandya power continued to grow under Srimara and encroached further into the Pallava territories. The Pallavas were now facing a new threat in the form of the Rashtrakutas who had replaced the Chalukyas in the western Deccan. However the Pallavas found an able monarch in Nandivarman III, who with the help of his Ganga and the Chola allies defeated Srimara at the battle of Tellaru. The Pallava kingdom again extended up to the river Vaigai. The Pandyas suffered further defeats in the hands of the Pallava Nripatunga at Arisil (c. 848). From then the Pandyas had to accept the overlordship of the Pallavas.
Around 850, out of obscurity rose Vijayalaya, made use of an opportunity arising out of a conflict between Pandyas and Pallavas, captured Thanjavur and eventually established the imperial line of the medieval Cholas. Vijayalaya revived the Chola dynasty and his son Aditya I helped establish their independence. He invaded Pallava kingdom in 903 and killed the Pallava king Aparajita in battle, ending the Pallava reign. The Chola kingdom under Parantaka I expanded to cover the entire Pandya country. However towards the end of his reign he suffered several reverses by the Rashtrakutas who had extended their territories well into the Chola kingdom.
The Cholas went into a temporary decline during the next few years due to weak kings, palace intrigues and succession disputes. Despite a number of attempts the Pandya country could not be completely subdued and the Rashtrakutas were still a powerful enemy in the north. However, the Chola revival began with the accession of Rajaraja Chola I in 985. Cholas rose as a notable military, economic and cultural power in Asia under Rajaraja and his son Rajendra Chola I. The Chola territories stretched from the islands of Maldives in the south to as far north as the banks of the river Ganges in Bengal. Rajaraja Chola conquered peninsular South India, annexed parts of Sri Lanka and occupied the islands of Maldives. Rajendra Chola extended the Chola conquests to the Malayan archipelago by defeating the Srivijaya kingdom. He defeated Mahipala, the king of Bihar and Bengal, and to commemorate his victory he built a new capital called Gangaikonda Cholapuram (the town of Cholas who conquered the Ganges). At its peak the Chola Empire extended from the island of Sri Lanka in the south to the Godavari basin in the north. The kingdoms along the east coast of India up to the river Ganges acknowledged Chola suzerainty. Chola navies invaded and conquered Srivijaya in the Malayan archipelago. Chola armies exacted tribute from Thailand and the Khmer kingdom of Cambodia. During the reign of Rajaraja and Rajendra, the administration of the Chola empire matured considerably. The empire was divided into a number of self-governing local government units, and the officials were selected through a system of popular elections.
Throughout this period, the Cholas were constantly troubled by the ever resilient Sinhalas trying to overthrow the Chola occupation of Lanka, Pandya princes trying to win independence for their traditional territories, and by the growing ambitions of the Chalukyas in the western Deccan. The history of this period was one of constant warfare between the Cholas and of these antagonists. A balance of power existed between the Chalukyas and the Cholas and there was a tacit acceptance of the Tungabhadra river as the boundary between the two empires. However, the bone of contention between these two powers was the growing Chola influence in the Vengi kingdom. The Cholas and Chalukyas fought many battles and both kingdoms were exhausted by the endless battles and a stalemate existed.
Marital and political alliances between the Eastern Chalukya kings based around Vengi located on the south banks of the river Godavari began during the reign of Rajaraja following his invasion of Vengi. Virarajendra Chola's son Athirajendra Chola was assassinated in a civil disturbance in 1070 and Kulothunga Chola I ascended the Chola throne starting the Chalukya Chola dynasty. Kulothunga was a son of the Vengi king Rajaraja Narendra. The Chalukya Chola dynasty saw very capable rulers in Kulothunga Chola I and Vikrama Chola, however the eventual decline of the Chola power practically started during this period. The Cholas lost control of the island of Lanka and were driven out by the revival of Sinhala power. Around 1118 they also lost the control of Vengi to Western Chalukya king Vikramaditya VI and Gangavadi (southern Mysore districts) to the growing power of Hoysala Vishnuvardhana, a Chalukya feudatory. In the Pandya territories, the lack of a controlling central administration caused a number of claimants to the Pandya throne to cause a civil war in which the Sinhalas and the Cholas were involved by proxy. During the last century of the Chola existence, a permanent Hoysala army was stationed in Kanchipuram to protect them from the growing influence of the Pandyas. Rajendra Chola III was the last Chola king. The Kadava chieftain Kopperunchinga I even captured Rajendra and held him prisoner. At the close of Rajendra’s reign (1279), the Pandyan Empire was at the height of prosperity and had completely absorbed the Chola kingdom.
After being overshadowed by the Pallavas and Cholas for centuries, Jatavarman Sundara Pandyan briefly revived the Pandya glory in 1251 and the Pandya power extended from the Telugu countries on banks of the Godavari river to the northern half of Sri Lanka. When Maaravaramban Kulasekara Pandyan I died in 1308, a conflict stemming from succession disputes arose amongst his sons - the legitimate Sundara Pandya and the illegitimate Vira Pandya (who was favoured by the king) fought each other for the throne. Soon Madurai fell into the hands of the invading armies of the Delhi Sultanate (which initially gave protection to the vanquished Sundara Pandyan).
Malik Kafur, a general of the Delhi Sultan Alauddin Khilji invaded and sacked Madurai in 1311. Pandyas and their descendants where confined to a small region around Thirunelveli for a few more years. Ravivarman Kulasekara (1299–1314), a Chera feudatory of Kulasekara Pandya, staked his claim to the Pandya throne. Ravivarman Kulasekhara, utilising the unsettled nature of the country, quickly overran the southern Tamil Nadu and brought the entire region from Kanyakumari to Kanchipuram, under the Chera kingdom. His inscription was found in Punaamalli, a suburb of Madras.
Vijayanagar and Nayak period (1300–1650)[संपादन]
The fourteenth century invasion by the Delhi Sultans caused a retaliatory reaction from the Hindus, who rallied to build a new kingdom, called the Vijayanagara Empire. Bukka, with his brother Harihara founded the Hindu Vijayanagara Empire based in the city of Vijayanagara in Karnataka. Under Bukka the empire prospered and continued to expand towards the south. Bukka and his son Kampana conquered most of the kingdoms of southern India. In 1371 the Vijayanagar empire defeated the short lived Madurai Sultanate, which had been established by the remnants of the invading Khilji army. Eventually the empire covered the entire south India. Vijayangara empire established local governors called Nayaks to rule in the various territories of the empire.
The Vijayanagar Empire declined in 1564 defeated by the Deccan sultans in the battle of Talikota. The local Nayak governors declared their independence and started their rule. The Nayaks of Madurai and Thanjavur were the most prominent of them. Ragunatha Nayak (1600–1645) was the greatest of the Tanjavur Nayaks. Raghunatha Nayak encouraged trade and permitted a Danish settlement in 1620 at Tarangambadi. This laid the foundation of future European involvement in the affairs of the country. The success of the Dutch inspired the English to seek trade with Thanjavur, which was to lead to far-reaching repercussions. Vijaya Raghava (1631–1675) was the last of the Thanjavur Nayaks. Nayaks reconstructed some of the oldest temples in the country and their contributions can be seen even today. Nayaks expanded the existing temples with large pillared halls, and tall gateway towers, which is representative of the religious architecture of this period.
In Madurai, Thirumalai Nayak was the most famous Nayak ruler. He patronised art and architecture creating new structures and expanding the existing landmarks in and around Madurai. On Thirumalai Nayak's death in 1659, the Madurai Nayak kingdom began to break up. His successors were weak rulers and invasions of Madurai recommenced. Shivaji Bhonsle, the great Maratha Ruler, invaded the south, as did Chikka Deva Raya of Mysore and other Muslim Rulers, resulting in chaos and instability. Rani Mangammal, a local ruler, tried to resist these invasions showing great courage.
Rule of Nizams and Nawabs[संपादन]
European settlements began to appear in the Tamil country during the Vijayanagara Empire. In 1605, the Dutch established trading posts in the Coromandel Coast near Gingee and in Pulicat. The British East India Company built a 'factory' (warehouse) at Armagaon (Durgarazpatnam), a village around ३५ मैल (५६ किमी) North of Pulicat, as the site in 1626. In 1639, Francis Day, one of the officers of the company, secured the rights over a three-mile (5 km) long strip of land a fishing village called Madraspatnam from the Damarla Venkatadri Nayakudu, the Nayak of Vandavasi. The East India Company built Fort St George and castle on an approximate five square kilometre sand strip. This was the start of the town of Madras. The coromandel coast was ruled by the Vijayanagara King (Aravidu Dynasty), Peda Venkata Raya, based in Chandragiri and Vellore Fort. With his approval the English began to exercise sovereign rights over their strip of land.
In 1675, a column of Bijapur army came to Thanjavur to help Vijayaraghava and retrieved Vallam from the Madurai Nayak. However the same army subsequently killed Vijayaraghava Nayak and Ekoji managed to ascend the throne of Thanjavur kingdom. Thus began the Maratha rule of Thanjavur. After Ekoji, his three sons namely Shaji, Serfoji I, Thukkoji alias Thulaja I ruled Thanjavur. The greatest of the Maratha rulers was Serfoji II (1798–1832 ). Serfoji devoted his life to the pursuit of culture and Thanjavur became renowned as a seat of learning. Serfoji's patronised art and literature and built the Saraswati Mahal Library at his palace. The incursion of the Muslim armies from the north forced a southward migration of Hindus from the central Deccan and the Andhra countries to seek shelter under the Nayak and the Maratha kings. The famous Carnatic music composer Tyagaraja (1767–1847), along with the Trinity of Carnatic music flourished in the Thanjavur district during this time.
With the demise of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in 1707, his empire dissolved amidst numerous succession wars and the vassals of the empire began to assert their independence. The administration of the southern districts of Tamil Nadu was fragmented with hundreds of Poligars or Palayakkarars governing a few villages each. These local chieftains often fought amongst each other over territory. This turned the political situation in the Tamil country and in South India in general into confusion and chaos. The European traders found themselves in a situation where they could exploit the prevailing confusion to their own advantage.
European colonisation (1750–1850)[संपादन]
The French were relative newcomers to India. The French East India Company was formed in 1664 and in 1666 the French representatives obtained Aurangzeb’s permission to trade in India. The French soon setup trading posts in Pondicherry on the Coromandel coast. They occupied Karaikal in 1739 and Joseph François Dupleix was appointed Governor of Pondicherry. In Europe the War of the Austrian Succession began in 1740 and eventually the British and the French forces in India were caught up in the conflict. There were numerous naval battles between the two navies along the Coromandel coast. The French led by La Bourdonnais attacked the poorly defended Fort St. George in Madras in 1746 and occupied it. Robert Clive was one of the prisoners of war from this battle. The war in Europe ended in 1748 and with the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle Madras was restored to the British.
The conflict between the British and the French continued, this time in political rather than military terms. Both the Nawab of the Carnatic and Nizam of Hyderabad positions were taken by rulers who were strongly sympathetic to the French. Chanda Sahib had been made Nawab of the Carnatic with Dupleix's assistance, while the British had taken up the cause of the previous incumbent, Mohammed Ali Khan Walajah. In the resultant battle between the rivals, Clive assisted Mohammed Ali by attacking Chanda Sahib's fort in Arcot and took possession of it in 1751. The French assisted Chanda Sahib in his attempts to drive Clive out of Arcot. However the large Arcot army assisted by the French was defeated by the British. The Treaty of Paris (1763) formally confirmed Mahommed Ali as the Nawab of the Carnatic. It was a result of this action and the increased British influence that in 1765 the Emperor of Delhi issued a firman (decree) recognising the British possessions in southern India.
British Government control[संपादन]
Although the Company was becoming increasingly bold and ambitious in putting down resisting states, it was getting clearer day by day that the Company was incapable of governing the vast expanse of the captured territories. Opinion amongst the members of the British Parliament urged the government to control the activities of the Company. The Company's financial position was also bad and it had to apply for a loan from Parliament. Seizing this opportunity, the Parliament passed the Regulating Act (also known as East India Company Act) in 1773. The act set down regulations to control the Company Board and created the position of the Governor General. Warren Hastings was appointed the first Governor-General. In 1784 Pitt's India Act made the Company subordinate to the British Government.
The next few decades were of rapid growth and expansion in the territories controlled by the British. The Anglo-Mysore Wars of 1766 to 1799 and the Anglo-Maratha Wars of 1772 to 1818 put the Company in control of most of India. In a sign of the early resistance against the English control, the Palayakkarar chieftains of the old Madurai Kingdom, who had independent authority over their territories, ran into a conflict with the Company officials over tax collection. Kattabomman, a local Palayakkarar chieftain in the Tirunelveli district, rebelled against the taxes imposed by the Company administration in the 1790s. After the First Polygar War (1799–1802), he was captured and hanged in 1799. A year later, the Second Polygar War was fought by Dheeran Chinnamalai, by winning three wars against British after the fall of tipusultan kingdom at last he and his two brothers was illeagelly hanged and Dheeran Chinnamalai was the last Tamil king died in the war against Britishers and was put down by the Company after a long and expensive campaign. The end of the Polygar Wars gave the British complete control over a major portion of Tamil Nadu.
In 1798 Lord Wellesley became the Governor-General. In the course of the next six years Wellesley made vast conquests and doubled the Company's territory. He shut out the French from further acquisitions in India, destroyed several ruling powers in the Deccan and the Carnatic, took the Mughal Emperor under the company's protection and compelled Serfoji, the king of Thanjavur to cede control of his kingdom. The Madras Presidency was established so that the territory under direct Company control could be administered effectively. The direct administration began to cause resentment among the people. In 1806 the soldiers of the Vellore cantonment rebelled when William Bentinck, the Governor of Madras decreed that the native soldiers should abandon all caste marks. Fearing this act to be an attempt of forceful conversion to Christianity, the soldiers mutinied. The rebellion was suppressed but 114 British officers were killed and several hundred mutineers executed. Bentinck was recalled in disgrace.
End of Company rule[संपादन]
The simmering discontent in the various districts of the company territories exploded in 1857 into the Sepoy war. Although the rebellion had a huge impact on the state of the colonial power in India, Tamil Nadu was mostly unaffected by it. In consequence of the war, the British Government enacted the Act of 1858 to abolish the powers of the Company and transfer the government to the Crown.
British rule (1850–1947)[संपादन]
In 1858 the British Crown assumed direct rule in India. During the early years the government was autocratic in many ways. The opinion of Indians in their own affairs was not considered by Britain as important. However, in due course the British Raj began to allow Indians participation in local government. Viceroy Ripon passed a resolution in 1882, which gave a greater and more real share in local government to the people. Further legislation such as the 1892 Indian councils Act and the 1909 "Minto-Morley Reforms" eventually led to the establishment of the Madras Legislative Council. The non-cooperation movement started under Mahatma Gandhi's leadership led the British government to pass the Government of India Act (also known as Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms) of 1919. First elections were held for the local assemblies in 1921.
Failure of the summer monsoons and administrative shortcomings of the Ryotwari system resulted in a severe famine in the Madras Presidency during 1876–1877. The government and several charitable institutions organised relief work in the city and the suburbs. Funds were also raised from Europeans in India and overseas for the famine relief. Humanitarians such as William Digby wrote angrily about the woeful failure of the British administration to act promptly and adequately in response to the wholesale suffering caused by the famine. When the famine finally ended with the return of the monsoon in 1878, between three and five million people had perished. In response to the devastating effects of the famine, the government organised a Famine Commission in 1880 to define the principles of disaster relief. The government also instituted a famine insurance grant, setting aside 1.5 million Rupees. Other civic works such as canal building and improvements in roads and railway were also undertaken to minimise effects of any future famines.
The growing desire for independence began to gradually gather pace in the country and its influence in Tamil Nadu generated a number of volunteers to the fight against the British colonial power in the struggle for Independence. Notable amongst these are Tiruppur Kumaran, who was born in 1904 in a small village near Erode. Kumaran lost his life during a protest march against the British. The location of the French colony of Pondicherry, offered a place of refuge for the fugitives freedom fighters trying to flee the British Police. Aurobindo was one such living in Pondicherry in 1910. The poet Subramanya Bharathi was a contemporary of Aurobindo. Bharathi wrote numerous poems in Tamil extolling the revolutionary cause. He also published the journal India from Pondicherry. Both Aurobindo and Bharathi were associated with other Tamil revolutionaries such as V.V.S.Aiyar and V. O. Chidambaram Pillai. Tamils formed a significant percentage of the members of the Indian National Army (INA), founded by Netaji to fight the British occupation in India. Lakshmi Sahgal from Tamil Nadu was a prominent leader in the INA.
In 1916 Dr. T.M. Nair and Rao Bahadur Thygaraya Chetty released the Non-Brahmin Manifesto sowing the seeds for the Dravidian movements. During the 1920s, two movements focused mainly on regional politics began in Tamil Nadu. One was the Justice Party, which won the local legislative elections held in 1921. The Justice Party was not focused on the Indian independence movement, rather on the local issues such as affirmative action for socially backward groups. The other main movement was the anti-religious, anti-Brahimin reformist movement led by E.V. Ramasami Naicker. Further steps towards eventual self-rule were taken in 1935 when the British Government passed the All-India Federation Act of 1935. Fresh local elections were held and in Tamil Nadu the Congress party captured power defeating the Justice party. In 1938, Ramasami Naicker with C. N. Annadurai launched an agitation against the Congress ministry's decision to introduce the teaching of Hindi in schools.
Post Independence period[संपादन]
The trauma of the partition did not impact Tamil Nadu when India was granted Independence in 1947. There was no sectarian violence against various religions. There had always been an atmosphere of mutual respect and peaceful coexistence between all religions in Tamil Nadu. Congress formed the first ministry in the Madras Presidency. C. Rajagopalachari (Rajaji) was the first Chief Minister. Madras Presidency was eventually reconstituted as Madras State. Following agitations for a separate Andhra state comprising the Telugu speaking regions of the Madras state by Potti Sriramalu, the Indian Government decided to partition the Madras state. In 1953 Rayalaseema and the coastal Andhra regions became the new state of Andhra Pradesh and the Bellary district became part of the Mysore state. In 1956 south Kanara district was transferred to Mysore, the Malabar coastal districts became part of the new state of Kerala, and the Madras state assumed its present shape. The Madras state was named Tamil Nadu (the land of the Tamils) in 1968.
Ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka during the 1970s and the 80s saw large numbers of Sri Lankan Tamils fleeing to Tamil Nadu. The plight of Tamil refugees caused a surge of support from most of the Tamil political parties. They exerted pressure on the Indian government to intercede with the Sri Lankan government on behalf of the Sri Lankan Tamilians. However, LTTE lost much of its support from Tamil Nadu following the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi on 21 May 1991 by an operative from Sri Lanka for the former Prime Minister's role in sending Indian peacekeepers to Sri Lanka to disarm the LTTE.
The east coast of Tamil Nadu was one of the areas affected by the Indian Ocean earthquake of 2004, during which almost 8000 people died in the disaster. The sixth most populous state in the Indian Union, Tamil Nadu was the seventh largest economy in 2005 among the states of India. The growing demands for skilled labour has caused increased number of educational institutions in Tamil Nadu. The widespread application of caste based affirmative action caused the state to have 69% of all educational and employment vacancies to be reserved to the backward castes. Such caste-based reservations have huge public support in Tamil Nadu, with no popular protests organised against its implementation.
Evolution of regional politics[संपादन]
The politics of Tamil Nadu have gone through three distinct phases since independence. The domination of the Congress Party after 1947 gave way to the Dravidian populist mobilisation in the 1960s. This phase lasted until towards the end of the 1990s. The most recent phase saw the fragmentation of the Dravidian political parties and led to the advent of political alliances and coalition governments.
Annadurai formed the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) in 1949 after splitting from Dravidar Kazhagam. DMK also decided to oppose the 'expansion of the Hindi culture' in Tamil Nadu and started the demand for a separate homeland for the Dravidians in the South. The demand was for an Independent state called Dravida Nadu (country of Dravidians) comprising Tamil Nadu and parts of Andhra, Karnataka and Kerala. The increased involvement of the Indian National Congress party in Madras during the late 1950s and the strong pan-Indian emotions whipped up by the Chinese invasion of India in 1962 led to the demand for Dravida Nadu losing some of its immediacy. Consequently in 1963, when the Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution of India, precluded secessionist parties from contesting elections, the DMK chose to formally drop its demand for an independent Dravidistan, focusing instead on securing greater functional autonomy within the framework of the Indian Constitution.
The Congress party, riding on the wave of public support stemming from the independence struggle, formed the first post-independence government in Tamil Nadu and continued to govern until 1967. In 1965 and 1968, DMK led widespread anti-Hindi agitations in the state against the plans of the Union Government to introduce Hindi in the state schools. Affirmative action in employment and educational institutions were pioneered in Tamil Nadu based on the demands of the Dravidian movement. The leadership of the Dravidian movement had very capable authors and literati in Annadurai and Karunanidhi, who assiduously utilised the popular media of stage plays and movies to spread its political messages. MG Ramachandran (MGR) who later became the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, was one such stage and movie actor.
In 1967 DMK won the state election. DMK split into two in 1971, with MGR forming the splinter All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK). Since then these two parties have dominated the politics of Tamil Nadu. AIADMK, under MGR retained control of the State Government over three consecutive assembly elections in 1977, 1980 and 1984. After MGR's death AIADMK was split over the succession between various contenders. Eventually J. Jayalalithaa took over the leadership of AIADMK.
Several changes to the political balance in Tamil Nadu took place during the later half of the 1990s, eventually leading to the end of the duopoly of DMK and AIADMK in the politics of Tamil Nadu. In 1996, a split in the Congress party in Tamil Nadu eventuated in the formation of Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC). TMC aligned with the DMK, while another party Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK), which split from DMK aligned with the AIADMK. These and several smaller political parties began to gain popular support. The first instance of a 'grand alliance' was during the 1996 elections for the National parliament, during which the AIADMK formed a large coalition of a number smaller parties to counter the electoral threat posed by the alliance between the DMK and TMC. Since then the formation of alliances of large number of political parties has become an electoral practice in Tamil Nadu. The electoral decline of Congress party at the national level, which started during the early 1990, forced the Congress to seek coalition partners from various states including Tamil Nadu. This paved the way for the Dravidian parties to be part of the Central Government.
- "Historical Atlas of South India-Timeline". French Institute of Pondicherry. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- Pappu et al., Antiquity vol 77 no 297, September 2003
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP, reprinted 2000, p 44.
- Tools of the Madras Industry have been found in the Kaveri and Vaigai beds —K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari, Advanced History of India, p. 14.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p. 45.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p. 46.
- "Significance of Mayiladuthurai find". The Hindu May 1, 2006. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- One such was found at Krishnagiri in Tamil Nadu—"Steps to preserve megalithic burial site". The Hindu, Oct 6, 2006. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, pp. 49–51
- Subramanian T.S. (Feb 17, 2005) The Hindu, retrieved 7/31/2007 Rudimentary Tamil-Brahmi script' unearthed at Adichanallur
- Subramanian T.S. (May 26, 2004 ) The Hindu, retrieved 7/31/2007 Skeletons, script found at ancient burial site in Tamil Nadu
- 'The most interesting pre-historic remains in Tamil India were discovered at Adichanallur. There is a series of urn burials. seem to be related to the megalithic complex. - Zvelebil, K.A., Companion Studies to the History of Tamil Literature - pp 21–22, Brill Academic Publishers.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, pp 109–112
- 'There were three levels of redistribution corresponding to the three categories of chieftains, namely: the Ventar, Velir and Kilar in descending order. Ventar were the chieftains of the three major lineages, viz Cera, Cola and Pandya. Velir were mostly hill chieftains, while Kilar were the headmen of settlements...' —"Perspectives on Kerala History". P.J.Cherian (Ed),. Archived from the original on 2006-08-26. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p 129
- 'Everywhere within Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi's domain, and among the people beyond the borders, the Cholas, the Pandyas, the Satyaputras, the Keralaputras, as far as Tamraparni...' —"Asoka's second minor rock edict". 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- K.A.N. Sastri, The CōĻas, 1935 p 20
- "Hathigumpha Inscription". Epigraphia Indica, Vol. XX (1929–1930). Delhi, 1933, pp 86–89. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- Pattinappaalai, Porunaraatruppadai and a number of individual poems in Akananuru and Purananuru have been the main source for the information we attribute now to Karikala. See also K.A.N. Sastri, The Colas, 1935
- Cilappatikaram (c. sixth century C.E.) which attributes northern campaigns and conquests to all the three monarchs of the Tamil country, gives a glorious account of the northern expeditions of Karikala, which took him as far north as the Himalayas and gained for him the alliance and subjugation of the kings of Vajra, Magadha and Avanti countries. There is no contemporary evidence either in Sangam literature or from the north Indian source for such an expedition.
- "63 Nayanmars". 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- In Megasthenes' account (350 BCE – 290 BCE), the Pandya kingdom is ruled by Pandaia, a daughter of Herakles —K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p 23
- "'Roman Maps and the Concept of Indian Gems". 2006-05-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- 'Archaeologists from UCLA and the University of Delaware have unearthed the most extensive remains to date from sea trade between India and Egypt during the Roman Empire, adding to mounting evidence that spices and other exotic cargo travelled into Europe over sea as well as land.' "Archaeologists Uncover Ancient Maritime Spice Route Between India, Egypt". Veluppillai, Prof. A.,. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
- संगम युग चेरास आणि रोमन साम्राज्य यांच्यातील समुद्री संपर्कासाठी पुरातत्व पुरावा तिरुचिजवळील करूर येथे सापडला आहे. -- आर नागासामी, रोमन करुर
- "Malayalam" Manipravalam or Mani+Pavazham Mani=Sanskrit Pavazham= Tamil,.manipravalam called Malayalam . first appeared in writing in the vazhappalli inscription which dates from about 830 AD. "Writing Systems and Languages of the world". Omniglot. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- Kamil Veith Zvelebil, Companion Studies to the History of Tamil Literature, p 12
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP (1955) p 105
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP (1955) pp 118, 119
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP (1955) p 124
- 'The vast quantities of gold and silver coins struck by Roman emperors up to Nero (54–68CE) found all over Tamil Nadu testify the extent of the trade, the presence of Roman settlers in the Tamil country'. K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP (1955) pp 125–127
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, OUP (1955) p 128
- 'Kalabhraas were denounced as 'evil kings' (kaliararar) —K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p 130
- Hermann Kulke, Dietmar Rothermund, A History of India, Routledge (UK), p 105
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India p 130
- K.A.N. Sastri postulates that there was a live connection between the early Cholas and the Renandu Cholas of the Andhra country. The northward migration probably took place during the Pallava domination of Simhavishnu. Sastri also categorically rejects the claims that these were the descendants of Karikala Chola —K.A.N. Sastri, The CōĻas, 1935 p 107
- "South Asian Writing Systems". 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- The identity of the author of Tirukkural is not known with any certainty. This work of 1330 distichs is attributed to Tiruvalluvar, who was probably a Jain with knowledge of the Sanskrit didactic works of the north.
- Pandya Kadungon and Pallava Simhavishnu overthrew the Kalabhras. Acchchutakalaba is likely the last Kalabhra king —K.A.N. Sastri, The CōĻas, 1935 p 102
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 382
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 333–335
- K.A.N. Sastri, The CoLas, pp 102
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India p 387
- There is an inscription from 1160 that the custodians of Siva temples who had social intercourses with Vaishnavites would forfeit their property. —K.A.N. Sastri, The CōĻas, 1935 pp 645
- Some of the output of villages throughout the kingdom was given to temples that reinvested some of the wealth accumulated as loans to the settlements. The temple served as a centre for redistribution of wealth and contributed towards the integrity of the kingdom —John Keays, India a History, pp 217–218
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 342–344
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 91–92
- Durga Prasad, History of the Andhras up to 1565 A. D., pp 68
- Kamil V. Zvelebil (1987). "The Sound of the One Hand", Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 107, No. 1, p. 125-126.
- Graeme Lyall. Seon - The Buddhism of Korea.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 140
- "Pandya Dynasty". Encyclopaedia Britannica. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India p 140
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India p 145
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 144–145
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India p 159
- K.A.N. Sastri, The CoLas, 1935. pp 211–215
- The kadaram campaign is first mentioned in Rajendra's inscriptions dating from his 14th year. The name of the Srivijaya king was Sangrama Vijayatungavarman —K.A.N. Sastri, The CoLas, 1935 pp 211–220
- There is an inscription in the Chidambaram temple dated 1114 mentioning a peculiar stone presented by the king of Kambhoja (Kampuchea)to Rajendra Chola which the Chola king caused to be inserted into the wall of the Chidambaram shrine —K.A.N. Sastri, The CoLas, 1935 p 325
- 'In the twelfth year of Parantaka I the [Uttaramerur] sabha passed a resolution [...] that the election of local government officials will be carried out through lots (kudavolai)' —K.A.N. Sastri, The Colas, p 496.
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari, Advanced History of India, pp 294
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari, Advanced History of India, pp 296–297
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 197
- "Chera Coins - Tamil Coins, a Study". R. Nagasamy. Archived from the original on 2006-07-18. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 214–217
- Kampana's wife Ganga Devi wrote an account of this campaign in a Sanskrit poem Madhura Vijayam (Conquest of Madurai) —K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India pp 241
- Rama Raya fought Ali Adil Shah at Talikota on 15 September 1564 —K.A.N. Sastri, A History of South India, p 266
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari Advanced History of India p 428
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari Advanced History of India p 427
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari Advanced History of India p 553
- John Keay, India, a History, p 370
- K.A.N. Sastri, Srinivasachari, Advanced History of India, p 583
- "Maratha Kings of Thanjavur". 2006-11-18 रोजी पाहिले.
- John Keay, India, a History, pp 372–374
- John Keay, India, a History, pp 393–394
- John Keay, India, a History, p 379
- Hermann Kulke, Dietmar Rothermund, A History of India pp 245
- John Keay, India, a History, pp 380
- Nicholas Dirk, The Hollow Crown, pp 19–24
- "The first rebellion". The Hindu Jun 19, 2006. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- Read, Anthony, The Proudest Day—India's Long Ride to Independence, pp 34–37
- "The State Legislature—Origin and Evolution". 2006-10-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- Romesh Chunder Dutt, Open Letters to Lord Curzon on Famines and Land Assessments in India, p10
- "Victorian Values: Death and Dying in Victorian India". David Arnold. 2006-11-13 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Political situation in Pondicherry (1910–1915)". Extract from diary of A.B. Purani (PT MS5 (1924), 86. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Noting that the Tamils formed a large chunk of the strength of the INA, Prof. Pfaff, said it was always a moving experience to interact with the INA members from Tamil Nadu." "Tamils' contribution to INA campaigns recalled". The Hindu Dec 22, 2005. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "More than 75 per cent of the INA soldiers were Tamils" according to V. Vaidhyalingam, secretary and treasurer, Tamil Nadu Indian National Army League. "The unsung heroes". The Hindu Aug 02, 2004. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- Subramaniyam Swami, Is the Dravidian movement dying?, Frontline, Vol.20, Iss. 12, June 2003
- "Sowing The Seeds Of A Policy For Free India and the Anti-Hindi Agitation in the South 1910–1915". M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The battle for Andhra". The Hindu, Mar 30, 2003. 2006-11-17 रोजी पाहिले.
- Rajesh Venugopal, The Global Dimensions of Conflict in Sri Lanka p 19
- Chris McDowell, A Tamil Asylum Diaspora, p112
- ""Tamil Tiger 'regret' over Gandhi"". 2006-06-27 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Government of India Ministry of Home Affairs Situation Report". 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Ranking of states". India Today Group. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "With the highest rate of reservation already in place, TN stays calm". The Financial Express, May 28, 2006. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- John Harriss and Andrew Wyatt, THE CHANGING POLITICS OF TAMIL NADU IN THE 1990s, Conference on State Politics in India in the 1990s: Political Mobilisation and Political Competition, December 2004. p1
- The Justice Party was renamed the Dravidar Kazhagam (Dravidian Association) in September 1944 —Nambi Arooran, K., The Demand for Dravida Nadu
- The geographical region of the proposed Dravida Nadu roughly corresponded to the then Madras Presidency, comprising people speaking Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. —S. Viswanathan, A history of agitational politics
- Hargrave, R.L.: "The DMK and the Politics of Tamil Nationalism", Pacific Affairs, 37(4):396–411 at 396–397.
- Cynthia Stephen, The History Of Reservations In India From The 1800S To The 1950s
- S. Theodore Baskaran, The Roots of South Indian Cinema, Journal of the International Institute,
- L. R., Jegatheesan. "ஆளும் அரிதாரம் (Reigning filmdom)" (Tamil भाषेत). 2006-11-08 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)
- John Harriss and Andrew Wyatt, THE CHANGING POLITICS OF TAMIL NADU IN THE 1990s, Conference on State Politics in India in the 1990s: Political Mobilisation and Political Competition, December 2004. p2
- "The arithmetic of alliance and anti-incumbency". The Hindu, May 06, 2004. 2006-11-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- John Harriss and Andrew Wyatt, THE CHANGING POLITICS OF TAMIL NADU IN THE 1990s, Conference on State Politics in India in the 1990s: Political Mobilisation and Political Competition, December 2004. p4
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- Nilakanta Sastri, K.A. A History of South India. New Delhi.
- Nilakanta Sastri, K.A. The Colas. Madras.
- Codrington, Humphrey William. A Short History of Lanka. St Martin's Street, London.
- Nagasamy, R. Roman Karur. Madras.
- Nilakanta Sastri, K.A. Advanced History of India. New Delhi. ASIN B0007ASWQW.
- Read, Anthony. The Proudest Day - India's Long Ride to Independence. London.
- Dutt, Romesh Chunder. Open Letters to Lord Curzon on Famines and Land Assessments in India.
- Keay, John. India, a History. London.
- Dirks, Nicholas B. The Hollow Crown:Ethnohistory of an Indian Kingdom. USA.
- Chandra, Bipin. The India after Independence. New Delhi.
- Kulke, Hermann. A History of India.
- McDowell, Chris. A Tamil Asylum Diaspora: Sri Lankan Migration, Settlement and Politics in Switzerland. New York.
- "Religious Traditions of the Tamils". Veluppillai, Prof. A.,. 2006-05-15 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
- "63 Nayanmars". Sri Swami Sivananda, The Divine Life Trust Society. 2006-05-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Maratha Kings of Thanjavur". 2006-11-18 रोजी पाहिले.
- Shanti Pappu, Yanni Gunnell, Maurice Taieb, Jean-Philippe Brugal, K. Anupama, Raman Sukumar & Kumar Akhilesh. "Excavations at the Palaeolithic Site of Attirampakkam, South India". Antiquity. 77 (297).CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- "Archaeobotany of Early Historic sites in Southern Tamil Nadu". 2006-05-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Vellore Revolt 1806". 2006-05-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Historical Atlas of South India-Timeline". French Institute of Pondicherry. 2006-05-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Excavations at Arikamedu". 2006-05-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Roman Maps and the Concept of Indian Gems". 2006-05-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The State Legislature - Origin and Evolution". 2006-10-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The Changing Politics Of Tamil Nadu In The 1990s". John Harriss and Andrew Wyatt, Conference on State Politics in India in the 1990s: Political Mobilisation and Political Competition, December 2004. Archived from the original on 2007-06-30. 2006-06-14 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The Roots of South Indian Cinema". By S. Theodore Baskaran, The Journal of the International Institute. 2006-06-14 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Passions of the Tongue - Language Devotion in Tamil India, 1891–1970". Sumathi Ramaswamy University Of California Press. 2006-06-14 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Is the Dravidian movement dying?". Subramanian Swamy, Frontline, Vol 20, Issue 12, June 2003. 2006-06-14 रोजी पाहिले. Italic or bold markup not allowed in:
- "Tamil Coins- a study - Online Book". R. Nagaswamy. 2006-06-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The Political Situation In Pondicherry 1910–1915". 2006-10-12 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Sowing The Seeds Of A Policy For Free India and the Anti-Hindi Agitation in the South 1910–1915". M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.,. 2006-10-16 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
- "The Demand for Dravida Nadu". Nambi Arooran, K. 2006-10-16 रोजी पाहिले.
- "A history of agitational politics". Viswanathan, S. 2006-10-17 रोजी पाहिले.
- "Community, Class and Conservation:Development Politics on the Kanyakumari Coast" (PDF). Ajantha Subramanian. 2006-10-17 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The History Of Reservations In India From The 1800s To The 1950s" (PDF). Cynthia Stephen. 2009-03-15 रोजी पाहिले.
- "The Global Dimensions of Conflict in Sri Lanka" (PDF). Rajesh Venugopal, Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford. 2006-10-17 रोजी पाहिले.
- L. R., Jegatheesan. "ஆளும் அரிதாரம் (Reigning filmdom)" (Tamil भाषेत). 2006-11-08 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)
- "Varalaaru - Online Monthly Magazine". Dr.R. Kalaikkovan (Tamil भाषेत). 2007-04-12 रोजी पाहिले.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)