Sangam Age PPT Download

Sangam Age PPT Download

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  • The Sangam Age, often referred to as the Sangam Era, is a remarkable period in the history of South India that holds a unique place in the annals of Indian civilization.
  • Spanning from roughly 300 BCE to 300 CE, this era was characterized by the flourishing of art, literature, trade, and culture in the southern part of the Indian subcontinent. The term “Sangam” refers to a gathering or assembly, where poets and scholars congregated to compose exquisite poetry and document the life and times of their age.
  • In these Notes, we will delve into the fascinating world of the Sangam Age and explore its significance.

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Sangam Age

The Sangam period, specifically the third Sangam period, stands as a significant chapter in the history of ancient Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and parts of Sri Lanka, encompassing a timeframe from the 6th century BCE to the 3rd century CE. This era derives its name from the renowned Sangam schools, a collective of poets and philosophers based in the illustrious city of Madurai.

  • These academies thrived under the generous patronage of the Pandya rulers of Madurai, ushering in a cultural and literary renaissance of unparalleled significance.
  • During these Sangams, eminent scholars assumed the role of censors, meticulously curating the finest literary creations into anthologies.
  • These literary masterpieces are counted among the earliest specimens of Dravidian literature, providing invaluable insights into the rich heritage of the region.

The Three Sangams: Myth and Reality

According to Tamil traditions, the Sangam period was punctuated by three Sangams, often collectively referred to as Muchchangam.

  1. The First Sangam shrouded in myth and legend, is believed to have taken place in Madurai and is said to have been graced by the presence of gods and mythical sages. Regrettably, no literary remnants of this remarkable gathering have survived the ravages of time.
  2. The Second Sangam convened in Kapadapuram and has left us with the invaluable Tolkappiyam, a foundational text in Tamil grammar and linguistics. This work has endured as a testament to the intellectual prowess of the scholars who participated in this Sangam.
  3. The Third Sangam, once again hosted in Madurai, brought together a multitude of poets who generated a vast body of literature. However, only a handful of these works have survived to the present day. These remnants continue to serve as invaluable historical artifacts, shedding light on the cultural, social, and literary facets of the Sangam Age.

Legacy and Historical Reconstruction

  • While many literary creations from the Sangam period may have been lost to the annals of time, those that have endured provide a priceless window into the past.
  • These Tamil literary works, products of a vibrant and intellectually fertile era, remain crucial materials for reconstructing the history of the Sangam Age.
  • Their endurance reminds us of the enduring power of literature to transcend centuries, enriching our understanding of the profound cultural heritage of ancient South India.

Table of Sangam Age

Here’s a table summarizing the key information about the Sangam Age:

Aspect Sangam Age
Period Roughly 3rd century B.C. to 3rd century A.D.
Geographic Region South India (South of River Krishna and Tungabhadra)
Naming Origin Named after Sangam academies in Madurai under Pandya kings’ patronage
Literary Significance Early specimens of Dravidian literature
Sangam Academies Three Sangams: First, Second, and Third
First Sangam Believed in Madurai, attended by gods and legendary sages; no surviving literary works
Second Sangam Held in Kapadapuram; only Tolkappiyam survives
Third Sangam Also in Madurai; a few surviving Tamil literary works
Historical Period 6th century BCE to 3rd century CE
Role of Eminent Scholars Functioned as censors; curated anthologies
Contribution to Dravidian Literature Among the earliest examples
Value of Surviving Works Valuable materials for reconstructing the history of the Sangam Age

This table encapsulates the essential details and context of the Sangam Age and its significance in South Indian history and literature.

Sangam Literature: Insights into an Ancient Era

The Sangam literature, a treasure trove of information about the Sangam Age, comprises several significant works that provide valuable insights into this ancient period.

  • Tolkappiyam, attributed to Tolkappiyar, stands as the earliest known piece of Tamil literature. While primarily a treatise on Tamil grammar, it also delves into the political and socio-economic conditions of its time.
  • The Ettutogai or Eight Anthologies includes eight works, offering glimpses into various aspects of Sangam life.
  • On the other hand, the Pattuppattu or Ten Idylls consists of ten works, each contributing to our understanding of the era’s culture.
  • Pathinenkilkanakku, featuring eighteen works on ethics and morals, is highlighted by the renowned Thirukkural, authored by the Tamil sage Thiruvalluvar.
  • Furthermore, the two epics, Silappathikaram and Manimegalai, authored by Elango Adigal and Sittalai Sattanar, respectively, provide invaluable details about Sangam society and politics.

Dating the Sangam Literature

  • Scholars have debated the dating of the Sangam literature, but it is commonly assigned to the period between the third century B.C. and the third century A.D. This chronology finds support in various sources.
  • The contemporaneity of Gajabhagu II of Sri Lanka and Cheran Senguttuvan of the Chera dynasty serves as a crucial anchor for Sangam chronology.
  • This alignment is corroborated by texts such as Silappathigaram, as well as the Dipavamsa and Mahavamsa. Additionally, the discovery of Roman coins minted in the first century A.D. in Tamil Nadu lends further support to this dating, combining literary, archaeological, and numismatic evidence.

Other Sources Shedding Light on the Sangam Period

  • Apart from the Sangam literature, several other historical sources offer insights into the Sangam period. Greek authors such as Megasthenes, Strabo, Pliny, and Ptolemy mention commercial trade contacts between Western and South India, shedding light on the economic ties of the era.
  • The Asokan inscriptions bear mention of the Chera, Chola, and Pandya rulers to the south of the Mauryan empire, underscoring their significance.
  • Additionally, the Hathigumpha inscription by Kharavela of Kalinga makes reference to Tamil kingdoms, further enhancing our understanding of this fascinating period.
  • Furthermore, excavations at sites like Arikamedu, Poompuhar, and Kodumanal have revealed the extensive overseas trading activities of the Tamils, providing valuable archaeological evidence of their historical interactions.

Table of Sources of Information on the Sangam Age

Here’s a table summarizing the key sources of information on the Sangam Age:

Source Description
Sangam Literature
Works Tolkappiyam, Ettutogai, Pattuppattu, Pathinenkilkanakku, Silappathikaram, Manimegalai
Authorship and Significance Tolkappiyam by Tolkappiyar, earliest Tamil literary work; Provides insights on politics and socio-economics
Ettutogai (Eight Anthologies) Aingurunooru, Narrinai, Aganaooru, Purananooru, Kuruntogai, Kalittogai, Paripadal, Padirruppatu
Pattuppattu (Ten Idylls) Thirumurugarruppadai, Porunararruppadai, Sirupanarruppadai, Perumpanarruppadai, Mullaippattu, Nedunalvadai, Maduraikkanji, Kurinjippatttu, Pattinappalai, Malaipadukadam
Pathinenkilkanakku Eighteen works on ethics and morals; Includes Thirukkural by Thiruvalluvar
Silappathikaram and Manimegalai Epics written by Elango Adigal and Sittalai Sattanar; Provide insights into Sangam society and polity
Sangam Chronology
Scholarly Debate Scholars divided on dating of Sangam literature
Anchoring Dates Contemporaneity of Gajabhagu II of Sri Lanka and Cheran Senguttuvan of the Chera dynasty
Supporting Evidence Silappathigaram, Dipavamsa, Mahavamsa, Roman coins from 1st century A.D. in Tamil Nadu
Other Historical Sources
Greek Authors Megasthenes, Strabo, Pliny, and Ptolemy mention economic links between the West and South India
Asokan Inscriptions Mention Chera, Chola, and Pandya rulers south of Mauryan empire
Hathikumbha Inscription of Kharavela References Tamil kingdoms
Archaeological Excavations Unearthed evidence of Tamil overseas trading operations in sites like Arikamedu, Poompuhar, Kodumanal, and others

This table provides a concise overview of the various sources of information on the Sangam Age, including Sangam Literature, chronology debates, and other historical sources that contribute to our understanding of this ancient period.

Political History of the Sangam Period

During the Sangam Age, South India was characterized by the dominance of three major dynasties: the Cheras, Cholas, and Pandyas. These dynasties played a significant role in shaping the political landscape of the region, and our primary source of information about them comes from the literary references of the Sangam Period.


  • The Cheras held sway over the central and northern regions of Kerala and the Kongu territory in Tamil Nadu. Their capital was Vanji, and they controlled key ports on the west coast, such as Musiri and Tondi.
  • The emblem of the Cheras was a “bow and arrow.” Notably, the Cheras engaged in trade with the Romans, even building a temple of Augustus as a testament to their economic significance. Among the illustrious Chera rulers, Senguttuvan, also known as the Red Chera or the Good Chera, stood out in the 2nd century A.D.
  • His military conquests, detailed in the epic Silapathikaram, included a successful expedition to the Himalayas. Senguttuvan also introduced the Pattini cult, centered on the worship of Kannagi as the ideal wife, in Tamil Nadu. Additionally, he was the first to send an embassy from South India to China.


  • The Cholas governed the central and northern parts of Tamil Nadu, with their core dominion being the Kaveri Delta, later referred to as Cholamandalam. Their capital was initially Uraiyur, near Tiruchirapalli, while Puhar or Kaviripattinam served as an alternative royal residence and the principal port town.
  • The emblem of the Cholas was the “tiger,” reflecting their might. The Cholas maintained a formidable navy, and King Karikala was a renowned monarch of the Sangam Cholas. Pattinappalai, a literary work, provided insights into his life and military conquests, particularly the Battle of Venni, where he defeated a confederacy comprising the Cheras, Pandyas, and eleven minor chieftains.
  • Karikala’s military prowess earned him the position of overlord of the entire Tamil region during his reign. His rule was marked by economic prosperity, and he established the port city of Puhar, constructing an impressive 160-kilometer embankment along the Kaveri River.


  • The Pandya dynasty ruled from the city of Madurai, with their primary port at Korkai, situated at the confluence of Thampraparani and the Bay of Bengal. Korkai was renowned for its pearl fishing and chank diving activities.
  • The emblem of the Pandyas was the “fish.” They actively supported the Tamil Sangams, facilitating the compilation of Sangam poems. The Pandya rulers maintained a regular army, and their pearls were highly esteemed. Their society featured practices like Sati, caste, and idol worship, but widows were often mistreated.
  • They adopted the Vedic religion of sacrifice and patronized Brahmin priests. However, their power waned due to the invasion of the Kalabhras. After the Sangam Age, the Pandya dynasty experienced a period of decline but later resurged in the late 6th century.

This overview provides insights into the political history of the Sangam Period, highlighting the roles and significance of the Cheras, Cholas, and Pandyas in shaping the region’s governance and culture during this era.

Table of Political History of the Sangam Period

Here’s a Short table summarizing the political history of the Cheras, Cholas, and Pandyas during the Sangam Period:

Cheras Cholas Pandyas
Territory Territory Territory
Central and northern parts of Kerala and the Kongu region of Tamil Nadu. Central and northern parts of Tamil Nadu. Southern Tamil Nadu.
Capital Capital Capital
Vanji. Uraiyur (later Puhar/Kaviripattinam). Madurai.
Emblem Emblem Emblem
Bow and Arrow. Tiger. Fish.
Key Figures Key Figures Key Figures
Senguttuvan (2nd century A.D.). King Karikala. Nediyon, Arya Padai Kadantha Neduncheliyan.
Talaiyalanganattu Cheruvenra Neduncheliyan.
Notable Achievements Notable Achievements Notable Achievements
– Trade with Romans. – Victory in Battle of Venni. – Patronage of Tamil Sangams.
– Augustus temple. – Expansion in Tamil region. – Prosperous trade and pearls.
– Expedition to the Himalayas. – Flourishing trade and commerce. – Adoption of Vedic religion.
– Introduction of Pattini cult. – Kallanai construction. – Impact of Kalabhras.
– Embassy to China.

This table provides a concise summary of the key information regarding the Cheras, Cholas, and Pandyas during the Sangam Period.


Sangam Society: A Multifaceted Landscape

The society during the Sangam period was characterized by its multifaceted nature, as depicted in the ancient Tamil text, Tolkappiyam. This text introduced a five-fold division of lands, highlighting the diverse geographical regions that comprised South India.

  • These divisions included Kurinji, representing hilly tracks; Mullai, signifying pastoral areas; Marudam, denoting agricultural lands; Neydal, indicating coastal regions; and Palai, representing the desert areas. Such a classification underscores the rich natural diversity of the region.

Caste Structure and Social Fabric

  • Tolkappiyam also shed light on the societal structure of the Sangam period. It outlined a four-fold caste system, comprising distinct social classes. The arasar, or the ruling class, held a prominent position in society, governing the regions.
  • The anthanar, who engaged in various roles, contributed to the functioning of society. The vanigar, involved in trade and commerce, played a pivotal role in the economic landscape. Additionally, the Vellalar, primarily agriculturists, were essential for sustaining the agrarian economy.

Diversity in Tribal Communities

  • While the Sangam society had a structured caste system, it also coexisted with diverse tribal communities. Ancient tribes like the Thodas, Irulas, Nagas, and Vedars inhabited the region during this period.
  • These primitive tribes added to the cultural tapestry of South India, each with its unique way of life, customs, and traditions.

The Sangam society, as described in Tolkappiyam, thus emerged as a complex and diverse landscape, where geographical variations, caste distinctions, and tribal communities intertwined to form a rich and intricate social fabric.

Table of Sangam Society

Here’s a table summarizing the key aspects of Sangam Society based on the provided information:

Aspect Description
Five-fold Division of Lands – Kurinji (hilly tracks) – Mullai (pastoral) – Marudam (agricultural) – Neydal (coastal) – Palai (desert)
Caste Structure – Arasar (Ruling Class) – Anthanar – Vanigar (Engaged in trade and commerce) – Vellalar (Agriculturists)
Ancient Tribal Communities – Thodas – Irulas – Nagas – Vedars

This table provides a concise overview of the different aspects of Sangam Society, including its geographical divisions, caste structure, and the presence of various ancient tribal communities.

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Polity in the Sangam Age

During the Sangam period, hereditary monarchy served as the primary form of governance in South India. Monarchs, who wielded authority, often sought counsel from their trusted advisors, including ministers, court poets, and the imperial court collectively known as “avai.”

  • The rulers of the various Sangam dynasties bore distinct titles, such as Vanavaramban, Vanavan, Kuttuvan, Irumporai, and Villavar for the Cheras, Senni, Valavan, and Kili for the Cholas, and Thennavar and Minavar for the Pandyas.
  • Each dynasty proudly displayed its own emblem, symbolizing its identity: a carp for the Pandyas, a tiger for the Cholas, and a bow for the Cheras.
  • The imperial court, or avai, comprised numerous leaders and officials, structured into five councils with specific roles, including ministers (amaichar), priests (anthanar), military commanders (senapathi), envoys (thuthar), and spies (orrar). Monarchs maintained standing armies and revered their Kodimaram, a tutelary tree emblematic of their rule.
  • Government revenue primarily stemmed from land taxes, supplemented by customs duties on international trade. The Pattinappalai, customs officials stationed in Puhar’s harbor, played a crucial role in revenue collection, along with income from war booty. To maintain security and prevent theft and smuggling, extensive efforts were made to maintain well-monitored roads and pathways, ensuring round-the-clock vigilance.

Table of Sangam age – Polity

Here’s a table summarizing the key points about the Polity during the Sangam Age:

Aspect Description
Type of Government Hereditary Monarchy
Decision-Making Process The monarch consulted his minister, court poet, and the imperial court (avai) for opinions
Dynasties and Their Titles – Chera rulers: Vanavaramban, Vanavan, Kuttuvan, Irumporai, Villavar
– Chola kings: Senni, Valavan, Kili
– Pandya kings: Thennavar, Minavar
Royal Emblems – Pandyas: Carp
– Cholas: Tiger
– Cheras: Bow
Imperial Court Comprised various leaders and officials
Councils Split into five councils with specific roles: ministers, priests, military commanders, envoys, spies
Military and Tutelary Tree Each monarch maintained a regular army and had their own Kodimaram (tutelary tree)
Government Revenue Mainly from land revenue
Customs duties on international commerce
Customs Officials Pattinappalai stationed in Puhar’s harbour
Revenue Sources War booty also contributed to the royal treasury
Security Measures Extensive maintenance and monitoring of roads and pathways to prevent theft and smuggling


Sangam Age – Society

The society during the Sangam Age was characterized by a distinct division of lands into five categories known as Kurinji (hilly trails), Mullai (pastoral), Marudam (agricultural), Neydal (coastal), and Palai (desert), as described in Tolkappiyam.

  • Each of these divisions had its own inhabitants with unique primary occupations and deities they worshipped. In Kurinji, the chief deity was Murugan, and the primary occupations included hunting and honey collection. Mullai, on the other hand, revered Mayon (Vishnu) as the chief deity, with cattle-rearing and dairy product management as their primary occupations.
  • Marudam’s inhabitants worshipped Indira and primarily engaged in agriculture. Neydal, associated with Varunan, focused on fishing and salt manufacturing. Lastly, Palai, characterized by its harsh desert conditions, held the supreme god Korravai in reverence, and its major occupation was centered around robbery.
  • Furthermore, Tolkappiyam also classified society into four castes: arasar (the ruling class), anthanar (influential in Sangam politics and religion), vanigar (traders and merchants), and vellalar (those engaged in agriculture).
  • The arasar played a significant role in governance, while anthanars wielded influence in both political and religious matters. Vanigars were primarily involved in trade and commerce, contributing to the economic aspects of society.
  • Vellalas, on the other hand, were dedicated to agricultural activities, playing a crucial role in sustaining the region’s food production.
  • Alongside these distinct castes, the Sangam society comprised various tribal groups, including the Parathavar, Panar, Eyinar, Kadambar, Maravar, and Pulaiyar. Additionally, the Sangam Age was also marked by the coexistence of primitive tribes like the Thodas, Irulas, Nagas, and Vedars, each with their own unique way of life and traditions.

Table of Sangam age – Society

Here is a table summarizing the societal aspects during the Sangam Age:

Land Division Chief Deity Chief Occupation
Kurinji Murugan Hunting and honey collection
Mullai Mayon Cattle-rearing and dairy products
Marudam Indira Agriculture
Neydal Varunan Fishing and salt manufacturing
Palai Korravai Robbery
Castes Description
Arasar The governing class
Anthanar Influential in Sangam politics and religion
Vanigar Traders and merchants
Vellalar Engaged in agriculture
Other Tribal Groups
Parathavar, Panar, Eyinar, Kadambar, Maravar, Pulaiyar
Primitive Tribes during Sangam Age
Thodas, Irulas, Nagas, Vedars

Sangam Age – Economy

Agriculture held a paramount position in the economy of the Sangam period. Rice, the staple crop, was widely cultivated, accompanied by the cultivation of other crops like ragi, sugarcane, cotton, pepper, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, and various fruits. The Chera region was renowned for its affection for jackfruit and pepper, while paddy dominated the agricultural landscape in the Chola and Pandya territories.

  • The Sangam era witnessed a flourishing handicraft industry, including weaving, metalwork, carpentry, ship construction, and the crafting of jewelry using beads, stones, and ivory. These crafts were in high demand, both domestically and internationally, owing to the peak of internal and external trade during this period. Cotton and silk textile production, in particular, reached remarkable levels of excellence. Sangam poetry even mentions cotton garments as thin as a wisp of steam or a snake’s slough. Cotton textiles from Uraiyur were highly sought after in the Western world.
  • During the Sangam Age, trade, both domestic and foreign, was well-organized and efficiently conducted. Sangam literature, along with Greek and Roman accounts and archaeological findings, provides valuable insights into trade practices. Merchants transported goods on carts and animals, with internal trade primarily relying on barter. South India engaged in foreign trade with Greek kings, and as the Roman Empire gained prominence, Roman commerce became a significant part of the external trade landscape. The port of Puhar emerged as a crucial hub for foreign commerce, welcoming large ships laden with valuable commodities. Other active commercial ports included Tondi, Musiri, Korkai, Arikamedu, and Marakkanam, with the author of the Periplus providing vital information about overseas trade.
  • Archaeological discoveries in Tamil Nadu have unveiled a multitude of gold and silver coins minted by Roman Emperors like Augustus, Tiberius, and Nero. These coins attest to the extent of commerce and the presence of Roman traders in the region. The principal exports during the Sangam period comprised cotton garments, spices such as pepper, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, and turmeric, ivory items, pearls, and precious stones. Conversely, the most significant imports included gold, horses, and sweet wine, reflecting the dynamic economic exchanges that characterized the Sangam Age.

Table of Sangam age – Economy

Here’s a table summarizing the key points about the economy during the Sangam Age:

Aspect of Economy Details
Agriculture – Primary employment with rice as the main crop. Additional crops included ragi, sugarcane, cotton, pepper, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, and various fruits. Cheras were known for jackfruit and pepper, while paddy dominated Chola and Pandya territories.
Handicrafts – Popular crafts included weaving, metalwork, carpentry, ship construction, and jewelry making from beads, stones, and ivory.
Textile Production – Cotton and silk weaving reached a high level of excellence. Cotton clothing as thin as a mist of steam or a snake’s slough is mentioned in poetry. Uraiyur produced cotton clothing in high demand in the Western world.
Trade and Commerce – Well-regulated domestic and foreign trade. Merchants transported goods on carts and animals, with internal trade relying mostly on barter. South India engaged in external commerce with Greek kings, and Roman commerce became prominent during the Roman Empire’s rise.
Commercial Ports – Puhar’s harbor became a foreign commercial hub, with other active ports including Tondi, Musiri, Korkai, Arikamedu, and Marakkanam. The Periplus provides significant information on overseas commerce.
Coins and Exports The discovery of Roman coins (e.g., Augustus, Tiberius, Nero) in Tamil Nadu signifies extensive commerce and the presence of Roman traders. Exports included cotton garments, spices (pepper, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, turmeric), ivory items, pearls, and precious stones.
Imports – Key imports consisted of gold, horses, and sweet wine.

Sangam Age – Religion and Worship

During the Sangam era, Seyon or Murugan held a prominent position as the major god in Tamil religion. The worship of Murugan had ancient origins, and Sangam literature documented festivals dedicated to this deity.

  • Murugan was revered with great devotion and had six abodes known as Arupadai Veedu in his honor. Apart from Murugan, other deities such as Mayon (Vishnu), Vendan (Indiran), Varunan, and Korravai were also objects of worship during this period.
  • One significant aspect of religious practice during the Sangam era was the Hero Stone, also referred to as Nadu Kal worship. Hero Stones served as important commemorations of valorous warriors who had fallen in battle.
  • These stones were intricately carved with tales of the warriors’ bravery and were found in various locations throughout Tamil Nadu. This practice of honoring and remembering the departed through Hero Stones has a long and culturally significant history in the region. It reflects the deep-rooted reverence for heroic acts and valor that were celebrated in the Sangam society.

Table of Sangam Age – Religion and Worship

Here’s a table summarizing the information on Sangam Age Religion and Worship:

Aspect Information
Major God Seyon or Murugan, the Tamil God, held a prominent position during the Sangam era.
Murugan Worship Worship of Murugan had ancient origins, and Sangam literature documented festivals related to God Murugan.
Arupadai Veedu Murugan was honored with six abodes known as Arupadai Veedu.
Other Worshipped Deities Mayon (Vishnu), Vendan (Indiran), Varunan, and Korravai were also worshipped during the Sangam era.
Hero Stone (Nadu Kal) Worship The Hero Stone, known as Nadu Kal, was important for commemorating the valor of warriors in combat.
Hero Stone Carvings Many Hero Stones with tales of valor carved on them have been discovered in various locations of Tamil Nadu.
Historical Practice This tradition of honoring and remembering the departed through Hero Stones has a long history.

Sangam Age – Position of Women

The Sangam literature provides valuable insights into the position of women during the Sangam period, shedding light on various aspects of their lives. Notably, this era saw the flourishing of women poets such as Avvaiyar, Nachchellaiyar, and Kakkai Padiniyar, who made significant contributions to Tamil literature. These women were not only respected for their literary prowess but also allowed to engage in intellectual pursuits, breaking away from traditional gender norms.

  • A noteworthy aspect of Sangam society was the recognition of women’s bravery, which was celebrated in several poems. The concept of “Karpu,” signifying chaste and virtuous living, was highly esteemed by women during this period. Interestingly, marriages based on love were common practice, and women were granted the autonomy to choose their life partners, which marked a progressive departure from some societal norms of the time.
  • However, it’s essential to acknowledge the contrasting aspects of the status of women in Sangam society. Widows, unfortunately, had a wretched life, facing significant challenges and hardships. The practice of “Sati,” though not widespread, was observed in the upper echelons of society, where widows would self-immolate upon their husband’s death.
  • Moreover, it’s worth noting that the monarchs and nobility of the Sangam era patronized a class of dancers, highlighting the diverse roles and contributions of women in various aspects of life during this period. In summary, the Sangam literature offers a multifaceted perspective on the position of women, reflecting both progressive and regressive aspects of their societal roles and treatment.

Table of Sangam age – Position of Women

Here’s a table summarizing the key points about the position of women during the Sangam Age:

Aspect Description
Women Poets Women poets like Avvaiyar, Nachchellaiyar, and Kakkai Padiniyar flourished during the Sangam period and made significant contributions to Tamil literature.
Bravery of Women Sangam literature celebrated the bravery of women, with several poems lauding their courageous deeds.
Karpu (Chaste Life) Karpu, signifying chaste and virtuous living, was highly esteemed as the finest virtue of women during this period.
Marriage Practices It was common practice for marriages to be based on love, and women were given the right to choose their life partners, reflecting a progressive aspect of society.
Widows’ Situation Unfortunately, widows faced a wretched life during the Sangam period, and their existence was marked by significant challenges and hardships.
Sati Practice Sati, though not widespread, was practiced in the higher strata of society, where widows would self-immolate upon their husband’s death.
Patronage of Dancers The monarchs and nobility of the Sangam era patronized a class of dancers, showcasing the diverse roles and contributions of women in various aspects of life.

This table provides a concise overview of the various aspects of the position of women during the Sangam Age as described in the provided text.

Sangam Age – Arts

Poetry, music, and dance held a prominent place in the cultural milieu of the Sangam era. The rulers, chieftains, and nobility were known for their generous patronage of poets, highlighting the significance of literary arts during this period.

  • Among the notable figures were the Panar and Viraliyar, who were revered singing bards renowned for their mastery of traditional tunes and dances, gracing the royal courts with their performances.
  • Music and dance, as evidenced, were highly developed arts that thrived during the Sangam Age. References in Sangam literature also shed light on various musical instruments, including Yazhs and drums, contributing to the richness of the musical heritage.
  • Kanigaiyar’s dance performances were celebrated, showcasing the diversity of artistic expressions. Moreover, koothu, a form of entertainment, was immensely popular among the people, emphasizing the cultural vibrancy and artistic fervor of the Sangam society.

Table of Sangam age – Arts

Here is a table summarizing the information about arts during the Sangam Age:

Art Forms Description
Poetry Poetry held a prominent place in Sangam society, with generous patronage from monarchs and nobility.
Music Music was a highly developed art form, with various instruments like Yazhs and drums mentioned in Sangam literature.
Dance Dance was another significant art, and performances by artists like Kanigaiyar were celebrated.
Singing Bards Panar and Viraliyar, two renowned singing bards, were masters of traditional tunes and dances.
Entertainment Koothu, a popular form of entertainment, was favored by the people.

This table provides an overview of the various artistic elements that thrived during the Sangam Age, highlighting their importance in the cultural landscape of that period.

End of Sangam Age

The Sangam period, which had thrived for centuries, began to wane by the end of the third century A.D. This decline was marked by the occupation of Tamil land by the Kalabhras for approximately two and a half centuries.

  • Unfortunately, there is limited historical information available about the Kalabhra rule. During this period, Jainism and Buddhism gained prominence in the region.
  • However, the Sangam culture was not entirely extinguished. Emerging from the shadows, the Pallavas in northern Tamil Nadu and the Pandyas in the south rose to power, eventually pushing the Kalabhras out of Tamil Nadu and establishing their own reigns. This transition marked the end of the Sangam era, ushering in a new phase in the history of Tamil Nadu.

Table of End of Sangam age

Here’s the Short information in a table:

Key Events Details
Decline of Sangam Period The Sangam period gradually declined at the end of the third century A.D.
Kalabhra Occupation The Kalabhras occupied Tamil land for almost two and a half centuries, between 300 AD and 600 AD. There is limited knowledge about the Kalabhra reign.
Rise of Jainism and Buddhism During the Kalabhra occupation, Jainism and Buddhism gained prominence in the region.
Emergence of Pallavas and Pandyas The Pallavas in northern Tamil Nadu and the Pandyas in southern Tamil Nadu eventually overcame the Kalabhras and established their rule.


  • The Sangam Age, though often overshadowed by the grandeur of North Indian empires like the Mauryas and Guptas, stands as a testament to the vibrant cultural and intellectual life of South India during that time. The Sangam literature, in particular, is a treasure trove of knowledge that continues to be celebrated and studied today. As we delve deeper into the annals of history, the Sangam Age stands as a testament to the rich tapestry of India’s past, where diverse cultures and traditions flourished, leaving behind a legacy that continues to influence the present.
  • In commemorating the Sangam Age, we not only pay tribute to an extraordinary era but also gain a deeper understanding of the roots and evolution of South Indian civilization, which has shaped the region’s identity for centuries.

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