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Malayalam & Thunjath Ezhuthachan

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agnisharman View Drop Down
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  Quote agnisharman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Malayalam & Thunjath Ezhuthachan
    Posted: 11 October 2007 at 3:06am

I thought I was the only one who hated to live in Kerala.

History proves otherwise.... Read on!

I still strongly believe and recommend Kerala to be a place worth a visit / holiday


"Malayalam (hki¡q«) is the language spoken predominantly in the state of Kerala, in southern India. It is one of the 23 official languages of India, spoken by around 37 million people. A native speaker of Malayalam is called a 'Malayali'. Malayalam is also spoken in Lakshadweep and Mahé (Mayyazhi) in Puducherry. Malayalam should not be confused with Malay, a language spoken in Southeast Asia" says Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia.


Well that makes me a Malayali..! (a Wikipedia recognized types)  I am a native speaker of Malayalam, but not in Kerala.

You can also find a bunch of other wikipedia recognized Malayali trying to speard the little malayalam they know (Ezhuthachanmar) at


I was a little keen to lean more about "Father of the Malayalam language" after I saw a TV channel ask the question.


To start off I called my dad. Being a leading journalist, writer and a Master in Malayalam literature... I was pretty sure he is the right person to ask.


For the first time I heard the name "Ezhuthachan", until then I had heard and seen a movie Perunthachan. I was tryintg to related and check if these dudes were the same.

Perunthachan and Ezhuthachan have nothing in common, other than being father of something and someone! (that's what i think, correct me if i may be wrong)


What's the next thing we all do when we have very little information like name of a person... are you still thinking? huh!

Its the Internet Search...  ha ha ha!


I looked up on the internet... on Google and Yahoo. This is what I found about Y¤ºY® Fr¤YOu

I completely disagree with Ezhuthachan for leaving his wife and kid all to themselves, no matter whatever the reason(s).

 "Thunjath Ezhuthachan" - Father of Malayalam


The language Malayalam, belongs to the family of Dravidian languages. Both the language and its writing system are closely related to Tamil; however, Malayalam has a script of its own


Thunjath Ezuthachan, honoured as the father of modern Malayalam literature was born in Trikkandiyur near Tirur 400 years ago. He wrote his poems in Malayalam, at a time the Malayalam literature was subdued by Sanskrit, the language of the upper class. Ramayanam and Bharatham of Ezuthachan are widely read in Malayali houses, as sacred books.


The story of his birth is mixed with myths and truths. His real name was Ramanujan and signs of brilliance were evident in his childhood. He traveled extensively in search of knowledge and returned to Thrikandiyur, his birthplace, after mastering the religious sciences.  The privileged were jealous of his knowledge. Later on he came to be called the Father of Malayalam Language. Ezhuthachan tried to propagate the universal nature of the language. He wanted to bring language to level of a layman’s understanding.  


Why do Keralites call Ezhuthachan as father of Malayalam? 

“Chronologically, Cherushery (another prominent writer) lived before Thunjan. But the phrase ‘father of language’ is a symbolic reference. Language represents culture. So Ezhuthachan is in fact denoting culture. He shone as a brilliant star above our culture. He renovated the alphabets of heart. We see the light of conscience and moderation in Ezhuthachan. 

We call him ‘the father of Malayalam language’ because he led the language to a new dimension”.


Ezhuthachan also used language to revolt against the rule of the privileged. Hence, he is entitled to be called the father of the Malayalam language. He portrayed Malayalam as the language of love and harmony among those who celebrated Sanskrit.”.


“Ezhuthachan inscribed the Indian culture into Malayalam. When Shankaracharya (the renowned Hindu reformer) spread our thoughts outside Kerala, Ezhuthachan brought them to Kerala. When countries like China and Islamic countries of the Middle East are trying to preserve their culture from the onslaught of Western cultural invasion, no such attempts are evident from India’s side”, said Prof. B. Hridayakumari. 


“By relying on Western thoughts to analyze our education and economics, we are using an alien yardstick for measuring our own achievements. These are signs of our submission to a foreign culture”.


Source :



Ezhuthachan - Father of literary tradition in Malayalam

In Malayalam literature, Ezhuthachan has a place comparable to that of Tulsidas in Hindi. Though his predecessors like Cheeraman, Niranan poets and Cherusseri contributed in assimilating the great epics of Sanskrit into Malayalam, they concentrated on the basic story lines. Ezhuthachan escalated this assimilation by including metaphysical discourses and thereby introduced a high power and a lofty vision in the language.

It is a pity that very little historical data are available on this great poet. Though Ulloor Parameshwara Iyer has surmised that he was born in 1495 AD and lived upto 1575, other scholars are not sure about it. It is however generally accepted that he lived in the sixteenth century.

His parent’s names are not known clearly and there is some confusion about Ezhuthachan’s actual name as well. ‘Ezhuthachan’ is a sobriquet respectfully given to him as a sign of respect. Ezhuthu means writing and Achan means father or guru. Ezhuthachan thus means ‘The Guru of writing’. Presently, however, Ezhuthachan stands as a surname in Kerala.

Ezhuthachan was born in Tunchan Parambu village situated in the southern part of present Mallapuram district. After completing his education he got married but embraced sanyas after the birth of a daughter. Leaving house he traveled to various places in Andhra and Tamilnadu and learnt Telegu and Tamil. Some surmise that his Ramayanam and Mahabharatam were adopted from the Telegu versions of these epics. Even if it is so, they are resplendent in their own brilliance.

After returning, Ezhuthachan settled in picturesque Chittoor village. In this village he erected a Rama temple as well as a Shiva temple and founded his monastery named as “Ramanandashram”. Ezhuthachan’s samadhi is also situated here. In his monastery, he trained a galaxy of famous disciples, such as Suryanarayan Ezhuthachan, Karunakar-an Ezhuthachan, Devan Ezhuthachan and Gopalan Ezhuthachan.

!Source : The Times Of India

 ! - Additional Info
     The main disciples of Tunjath Ezhuthachan were 1). Karunakaran Ezhuthachan,

     (Nair), 2). Suryanarayanan Ezhuthachan, (Tharakan), 3). Devu Ezhuthachan

     (Tharakan) and 4). Gopalan Ezhuthachan (Menon).


Ezhuthachan simply did a great job spreading the Malayalam language, when Sanskrit was at the peak. Its a comparable scenario today too... English is the language over Malayalam.


Okay now back to Ezhuthachan, he spread the message of the people through Malayalam medium and then all of a sudden he realized... "Oooppsie! I am in Kerala" and like a typical Malayali (Wikipedia is yet to recognize or certify this types) left his wife and daughter to travel a lot, pretending to be a bachelor. (I wonder what was he spreading this time!)


He traveled a lot in the South,  learned Tamil and Telugu and then finally reached Chittoor where he decided to settled down. (Way to go AP & TN)

I am sure if there was a Shathabdi or Air Deccan he must have gone up north too and who knows, may be he would have settled in Lahore or Kabul.


But I should agree, Kerala is not a place where you can make a living until you already have made enough bank balance.

Check out places like "Ghelf" (Gulf), Paandi Naadu (Chennai other places in TN) or Mumbai.

You can still see a lot of Wikipedia recognized malayali's here making a living (and a fortune) in these cities.


What a pity, I am writing about Malayalam Language in English. An attempt not to spread the language, but to bring out the irony that Kerala or Malayalam as a language is not bringing the Wikipedia recognized Malayali back to their home. History proves that even Ezhuthachan fled his home town. (Why blame the ruling party, fleeing has been in the blood of every single wikipedia unrecognized Malayali)


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  Quote agnisharman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 November 2009 at 3:48pm

Well-known Malayalam poet Sugathakumari has been selected for 'Ezhuthchan' Puraskaram, Kerala Government's highest literary honour.

Sugathakumari, who created a new sensibility in Malayalam poetry, was chosen for the award in view of her outstanding contribution to literature, state Culture Minister M A Baby told reporters here today.

Named after revered father of Malayalam literature and medieval poet Thunchath Ezhuthachan, the award carries Rs one lakh, citation and memento.

The poems of Sugathakumari, who has been writing since 60s, are known for its social, spiritual and cultural crises of modern society. She has several collections to her credit.

Sugathakumari has also been a front line environmental campaigner and was an active participant in the struggle for conservation of the 'Silent Valley' 25 years ago.



(PTI news release from Thiruvananthapuram on November 13th 2009)

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