Common Core Language Arts And Math latest 2023

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The Age of Sangam

The conference of scholars and sages is known as “sangam” in Tamil. Poets and scholars would meet periodically in Madurai to deliberate on their academic works. According to Tamil legends, there were three sangams called ‘mudhal sangam’, ‘idai sangam’ and kadai sangam. The works of the first sangam are not available because the town where they held the lectures was submerged by flood waters or sea level rise. The “kadai sangam” produced a rich source of Tamil literature: “patthuppattu”, “etthutthogai” and “pathinenkiizhkkanakku”. The period from 400 BC to 500 AD is considered the Sangam period. It covered all of South India including Tamil Nadu, Kerala, part of Andhra Pradesh and part of Karnataka. It was ruled by three kingdoms called Chera, Chozha and Pandiya. They were known as moovendhargal (Three Great Kings). Senguttuvan was the greatest king of Cheras, Karikaal Chozhan was the greatest king of Chozhas, and Nedunchezhiyan was the greatest king of Pandyas. In the times of the sangam, the land was divided into five regions according to landscape, season and mood. They were called aynthinaigal, the five kudis or clans: Kurinji, Mullai, Marutham, Neithal and Palai. The inhabitants of these five regions were generally called malavars (hill gatherers), kadambars (those who thrive in the forest), mallars (farmers), nagars (city guards) and thiraiyars (sailors) according to their mode of life. life.

Kurinji: It includes mountains, mountain valleys and mountain plains. Kurinji is the name of a flower found in the Western Ghats. According to a legend, it blooms once every 12 years. The people of the Kurinji country worshiped the mother goddess, ‘Kottravai’ and a male deity called ‘Sevvael’ or ‘Karthikeyan’ (Lord Murugan). Their main economic activity is gathering produce from the hills for their own use and for trade with neighbours. The people of this region also practiced different professions viz. poruppas (soldiers), verpans (armorers), silamban (masters of martial arts), kuravars (hunters and gatherers) and kanavars (mountain forest people).

Mullai: It includes the forests at the foot of the hills. The people of this region worshiped ‘Thirumaal’. The economic activities of the people consisted of gathering forest products, cultivating land where it was available, and raising livestock. People known by their professions are kurumporai nadan-kizhaththis (landlords), thonral-manaivi (couples of ministers and nobles), idaiyars (milkmaids) and aiyars (cattle herders).

Marutham: This is the land of the plains. They worshiped a male deity called “Vaendan”. The main activity of these people was agriculture. There were also traders and merchants. People known by their professions were mallar (farmers), pallar (warriors), uraans (small landlords), magizhans (small farmers), uzhavars (farm workers), and kadaiyars (merchants).

Neithal: This is the land of the coastal region. They worshiped Kadalon. The inhabitants of this region were generally called “thiraiyans” (sailors). People known by their professions were saerppans (seafood sellers), pulampans (people who sell palm products), paravas (warriors of the sea), nulaiyars (wealthy fishermen) and alavars ( salt cultivators).

Palai: It is the land of the desert or dry land. The inhabitants of this region are called eyinars or eyitriyars (thieves).

Social life: People believed in God (Adi Bagawan, Kadavul and Irraivan). They worshiped the mother goddess ‘Kottravai’ and a male deity ‘Murugan’. But we don’t know if they followed a particular religion or followed Hinduism in the modern sense. Buddhists and Jains who came from northern India were accepted by the local population. They even contributed to Tamil literature, especially the Jains. Probably, the caste was not known to them. They were known by their names and professions and not by their caste names. They led a secular life and placed more importance on ethics, politics and love life. Women participated actively in politics, education and economic life.

Musicians and dancers entertained the king and the common people. The musical instruments they knew were thudi (a small percussion instrument), maylam (drum), muzhavu (wind instrument), kadambarai (a large bass-shaped drum), kuzhal (similar to nagasuram) and the yazh (stringed instrument). They enjoyed kootthu, a stage drama in dance form. Parayan (drum), muzhavan (muzhavu), kadamban (kadambarai) and paanan (yazh) were the musicians known for their expertise in a particular musical instrument.

Literature: Literary works composed during the first conference held in South Madurai under the chairmanship of Agastiyar are not available. Except for Tholkappiyam, a grammar book, written by Tholkappiyar who presided over the second conference held at Kapaadapuram, all other scholarly works are unavailable. In the third conference convened in Madurai, 473 male and female poets composed about 2,381 poems. No other Tamil literary work, in the last 2,000 years of Tamil history, has surpassed the classical standard of poems composed by poets of the Third Conference. The poems mainly had two themes called ‘agam’ (inner) and ‘puram’ (outer). While ‘agam’ deals with personal and human aspects, ‘puram’ deals with heroism, bravery, ethics, benevolence, philanthropy, social life and customs. The most popular literary work ‘Thirukkural’ written by poet Thiruvalluvar belongs to the third lecture. It contains 1,330 two-line poems, the first line with 4 words and the second line with 3 words throughout.

Trade: Agriculture, weaving, pearl fishing, manufacturing and construction were the main economic activities of this period. They grew paddy, pepper, millet, beans and sugar cane. Rice was their staple food. They made cotton and wood fiber fabrics. They exported cotton fabrics, pearls, ivory and pepper to Egypt and Rome and imported luxury goods such as glass, coral, wine and topaz. Madurai and Urayur were major textile centers. The pearl trade flourished in Korkai. Muziris, Thondi and Kaverippattanam were the other major trading centers. Archaeological evidence shows that they probably used Roman coins as a medium of exchange for exports and imports. The Kallanai built by King Karikal Chozhan is one of the oldest water regulating structures in the world. It remains in working order.

Most of Sangam Age Tamilagam was in the rain shadow region. Since the southwest monsoon did not bring rain to the rain shadow region, they relied on river irrigation. The western region received abundant rains but had no plains. The Western Ghats were both a gift and a curse. Nature probably expected people to be interdependent. Tamilagam had no desert. But, in the rain shadow region, the huge expanse of plains that could not be irrigated were generally dry. However, people lived in this arid land (eyinars and eyitriyars). Maybe these people haven’t found enough opportunities in other countries. Otherwise, the society was on the whole egalitarian. Women were treated with respect and dignity. Apart from chivalry, chastity was one of the glorified virtues. Traders could travel freely within any of the three kingdoms. One of the main duties of the king was to protect traders. Foreign travelers noted that Tamilagam was wealthier than Rome.

It is important to note that even after 2000 years the language is still in active use although the language has undergone many changes (the change is mainly the absorption of words from other languages). For example, the word “sangam” is not a Tamil word. Probably, it must have been introduced into Tamil by Jain scholars. The current form of the language is more flexible. One reason could be the emphasis on contextual meaning rather than phonemes. For example, if you ask a Tamil shop owner “give me a palam”, the shop owner will correctly give you a pazham (banana). The phrase “give me a palam” produces no other meaning in this context.

Another interesting point to note here was their ability to construct and build ships. The Kallanai (stone dam) built by King Karikal Chozhan continues to be used.

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