Monday, August 27, 2007

Onam is older than Dussehra and Deepavali


South India Heritage: An Introduction
Prema Kasturi and Chithra Madhavan
EastWest Books (Madras) Pvt Ltd


Do you know that Onam is one of the oldest festivals of India? Or that it used to be celebrated almost throughout South India, from Venkadam (Tirupati) Hills down to Kanyakumari (Cape Comorin)?

Onam is older than Dussehra and even Deepavali, writes S. Suresh in one of the essays included in South India Heritage: An Introduction edited by Prema Kasturi and Chithra Madhavan, from EastWest Books (Madras) Pvt Ltd. Maduraikkanchi, one of the earliest Tamil texts, written around the time of Christ, describes the festival in vivid detail. Those days, Madurai, the capital of the Pandya kings, was widely known for its Onam festivities

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