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Tirukkuṛaḷ

ThiruvalluvarOriginal title திருக்குறள் (Tamil, 1812)

The Tirukkural , or shortly the Kural, is a classic Tamil language text consisting of 1,330 couplets or Kurals. The text is divided into three books, each with aphoristic teachings on virtue , wealth and love . Considered one of the greatest works on ethics and morality, it is known for its universality and secular nature. Its authorship is traditionally attributed to Valluvar, also known in full as Thiruvalluvar. The text has been dated variously from 300 BCE to 5th century CE. The traditional accounts describe it as the last work of the third Sangam, but linguistic analysis suggests a later date of 450 to 500 CE and that it was composed after the Sangam period.The Kural is traditionally praised with epithets and alternate titles such as "the Tamil Veda" and "the divine book". It emphasizes non-violence and moral vegetarianism as virtues for an individual. In addition, it highlights truthfulness, self-restraint, gratitude, hospitality, kindness, goodness of wife, duty, giving, and so forth, besides covering a wide range of social and political topics such as king, ministers, taxes, justice, forts, war, greatness of army and soldier's honor, death sentence for the wicked, agriculture, education, abstinence from alcohol and intoxicants. It also includes chapters on friendship, love, sexual union, and domestic life.The Kural has been widely admired by scholars and influential leaders over its history. These include Ilango Adigal, Kambar, Leo Tolstoy, Mahatma Gandhi, Albert Schweitzer, Constantius Joseph Beschi, Karl Graul, George Uglow Pope, Alexander Piatigorsky, and Yu Hsi. The text has been translated into at least 40 Indian and non-Indian languages. The Kural is considered a masterpiece and one of the most important texts of the Tamil Literature. The Tamil people and the government of Tamil Nadu have long celebrated and upheld the text with reverence.


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