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Life History and Literary Works of
Tamil Poet C. Subramania Bharathiyar

Life History and Works of C. Subramania Bharathiyar


  • Born :11 Dec 1882 in Ettayapuram, Tirunelveli Dt, in Saiva Brahmin family
  • Parents: Chinnasami Aiyar and Lakshmi Ammal (mother died in 1889)
  • Personal name: Chinnasami Subramania Aiyar. The title "Bharathi" (tamil bharathi = goddess saraswathi ) conferred to him in 1893 in the Sabha of court-poets in recognition of his poetic talent - later it became his pen-name
  • 1894-1897: studied in Hindu college, Trinelveli
  • 15 June 897 married Chellamma, aged 7; 1898 father dies
  • 1898-1902 stay at Benares with his aunt, learns Sanskrit, Hindi etc, entrance exam to Allahabad Univ
  • 1902-1904 - court poet at Ettayapuram; Aug-Nov 1904 tamil teacher at Sethupathi High school, Madurai; Nov 1904 on the staff of CudEcamiththiran, well known tamil daily of Madras;
  • 1905 active political life starts; 1906 contact with Chithambaram Pillai, on the staff of radical daily Inthia; Attends Congress session in Calcutta, meets sister Nivedita
  • 1907 Editor of Inthiya and Bala Bharatha; meets Tilak, Aurobindo Ghosh, Lajpath Ray,...
  • Composes patriotic songs publishes his first book "SvathEca keethangkaL" in 1908
    1908 Inthiya newspaper comes under govt surveilance, takes refuge in POndicherry
  • 1909 2nd volume of poetry -janmmpUmi
  • 1908-1910 Inthiya paper published from Pondicherry; 1910 Aurobindo and VVS Aiyar come to Pondicheery
  • 1912-1918 stays in Pondi to avoid arrest by the british, writes political and other essays,...; composes poetry - Kannan pAttu, kuyil pAttu, pAncAli capatham,.... 1917 first editionof KannanpAttu released
  • nov. 1918 returns to India, got arrested and released after 34 days
  • 1918-19 levaes for kilkattiyam and ettayapuram, lives in poverty; 1919 goes to Madras meets Gandhi in Rajaji's house; 1920 joins CuthEcamiththrin in Triplicane
  • 12.9.1921 dies at the age of 39

Literary Works

The following collections published by Bharathi piracuralayam, Triplicane, 1949 contains shorter pieces:
  • thEciya keethangal - 57 poems
  • thoththirap pAdalkal - devotional songs, 66 pieces
  • vinayakar nanmanimaalai, kannanpattu -23 pieces
  • pirapadalkal - 30 pieces
  • autobiography in verse form:
    svacarithai (49 st.), bharathi arupathu (66 st), cinnacankaran kathai
  • puthiya aaththiccudi, paappapattu (1914, 16 quatrains)
  • pancali capatham - narrative poem in 1548 lines
  • prose - gnana ratham, 1910
  • short narrative pieces
    aaril oru pangku,1911-12


  • Bharathi nUlkaL, bharathi piracuraalayam, 6th ed, madras, 1949
    mahakavi bharathiyar kathaikal, thamizhakam, madras 1957
  • bharathi nUlkals-vacanam , madras govt publication 1959
  • bharathi nUlkaLs -katturaikals, bhrathi piracuralayam, 1950
    R.A. Padmanabhan, Bharathi puthaiyal, madras, 1959
  • Bharathi puthaiyal perunthirattu, madrs, 1982
    I maniyan, Bharathi tharicanam, new century book house, madrs, 1977
    Sini Viswanathan, Mahakavi Bharathi Manivachakam, madras, 1984


  • H Jesudasan, The song of the Cuckoo and other poems, trivandurm, 1950
  • H Valam, Pancali capatham, Devalali, 1957
  • S. Prema, Bhrathi in english verse, madras, 1958
  • S. Duraiswamy pillai, Bharathi's poems: kannan and kuyil pattu, madras, 1966
  • Prema Nandakumar, Poems of Subramania Bharathi, UNESCO-sahitya academy, delih, 1977
  • Krishna Srinivas, Bharathi -select poems, madras,, 1979
  • TN Ramachandran, Kannan pattu -original text with eng rendering, tanjore, 1980

Webpages of Bharathiyar Songs

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