Umaru Pulavar was a well known and much respected Tamil
Muslim poet and scholar from the Tamil country. The poet was born in the year 1642 in the region of Ettayapuram
, located in the district of Thoothukudi
. Umaru Pulavar is considered as one of the greatest Islamic Poets in the country. He composed the epic work of Cirappuranam
or Seerapuranam in Tamil language
, which is considered as one of his best works and is regarded as a valuable contribution to Tamil Islamic literature
. Citakkati, a Tamil Muslim who existed in the 17th century, was famed for his generosity and for helping the poor and needy. Citakkati invited Umaru Pulavar, who was a poet in a King`s court at the time, and urged him to write a poetical work that would elaborately describe the story about the life of Prophet Muhammad Nabi and his teachings. Cittakati expressed his desire in sponsoring the epic work but before Umaru Pulavar could complete the work, Citakkati died.
Abdul Kasim Marakkayar, another noble man, provided necessary financial support to Umaru Pulavar and supported him in finishing the epic work of Tamil Islamic literature. At the end of each hundredth verse in the Cirappuranam, Umaru Pulavar paid a tribute to Citakkati.
Early Life of Umaru Pulavar
The ancestors of the Umaru Pulavar came to the Tamil country to trade in perfumes and resided in Nagalapuram, before shifting to the region of Ettayapuram. Umaru Pulavar was born in the year 1642 in Ettayapuram. He trained and studied under Kadikai Muthu Pulavar, who was the court poet of the Ettayapuram Zamin. Thus the literary talents of Umaru Pulavar flourished under the guidance of his teacher. At the early age of 16, the Tamil Muslim poet acquired fame and recognition after he won a literary debate with Vallai Varundhi, who was popular and much venerated poet from Northern India. Eventually Umaru Pulavar was then made the court poet of the Ettayapuram Zamin.
Literary Works of Umaru Pulavar
Cirappuranam, also known as Seerapuranam, is amongst the most prominent and popular literary compositions of the Tamil Muslim poet Umaru Pulavar. The epic work narrates the tales that are related to the life of the Prophet Mohammed Nabi, in an elaborate manner. Cirappuranam consists of five thousand and twenty seven verses which are segmented into three parts, known as Kandams in Tamil language. These three parts are Vilathathu Kandam, Noobuvathu Kandam and Hijurathu Kandam. Each of the segments or Kandams in the epic work of Cirappuranam vividly describes the different stages in the life of Prophet Mohammed Nabi.
Among the other poetic works that are composed by the poet Umaru Pulavar, the verses of Sethakathi wedding poems and Muthu Mozhil Malai are noteworthy.