Q. 7 A3.5( 2 Votes )

Answer the following in detail:

To what extent do you think the political powers of Tamilagam influenced Sangam Age polity?

Answer :

Sangam Age', extends between 300 B.C. and 300 A.D. The Tamil Sangam was an Academy of poets and bards. They flourished in three different periods and in different places. It was under the patronage of the Tamil kings. 'Sangam' is derived from the Sanskrit word "Sangha" meaning a group of persons or an association.

There were three Sangam periods

1) Head Sangam

2) Middle Sangam

3) Last Sangam period

The political structure of Sangam age

1) The kings.

a) A king was called vendar.

b) The umbrella, the staff, and drum were symbols of a king's power. War and conquest were glorified.

c) A king who won against seven others was called a vijigishu.

d) The most powerful king was supposed to undertake a digvijaya – a triumphant expedition in a clockwise way over the whole of India.

e) The king’s sabha or manram was the highest court of justice.

2) The chieftains.

a) Several minor chieftains ruled parts of the Tamil country.

b) The vel/velar or chieftain was less powerful than the crowned kings.

c) The Sangam poets honour some of the velirs, especially those known as the Seven Patrons, for their kindness to the poets.

d) Kapilar and Avvaiyar talk about chieftains like Ay, Andiran, Pari, Adaigaman and Tagadur.

3) Administration during Sangham age

a) Inscriptions mention about subordinate rulers and officers.

b) Pandya writings mention officers for pearl fisheries (kalatika) and the chief scribes (kanatikan).

4) Government structure

a) A government with a simple structure existed.

b) The kings and chieftains had more manage over urban areas.

c) There were officers to make agreements in foreign trade and customs revenue was an important part of the financial plan.


The kings depended on poets and religious leaders for legality. They were well-known with the Vedas, performed Vedic rituals, and also holded up Brahmins.

Polity in a different periods

Thus the Sangam age literature was interconnected with the political structure and condition of the early tamilakam. The subjects of literature were varied from the praise of Kings to other social issues. The political powers of Tamilakam influenced Sangam Age polity in a varied and extended way. The Sangam age literature is the most flourished one of all times.

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