Ponniyin Selvan Chapter 1

Ponniyin Selvan Chapter 1
Tamil Language

Ponniyin Selvan Chapter 1

Ponniyin Selvan fever is on. The story is known for its magnificence and the novel is unputtable. The blog is an articulation of the storyline, the interesting plots and a summary of the story.

Maniratnam’s upcoming film Ponniyin Selvan is the talk of the town now. The magnificence of the Ponniyin Selvan teaser that was released a week ago has created expectations. And the huge wait is on for the film to hit the big screen in the month of september. Ponniyin Selvan remains a testimony to the richness of Tamil literature since its release in the 1950s. The Ponniyin Selvan story is often compared to the world renowned game of thrones. The story revolves around Nandhini who is armed with the intention of destroying the Chola empire, and Kunthavai, who on the other hand strives to stabilize the Chola kingdom. 

The blog is an endeavour to give an overview of Ponniyin Selvan. In case you have already read the novel long back and looking forward to recalling the overall picture before actually watching the movie, this blog and the ones that follow might help. If you have not read already, reading the blog series would help you develop a broader picture of the novel. 

Why do people say Ponniyin Selvan is an EPIC?

Ponniyin Selvan is a historic fiction novel penned by Kalki Krishnamurthy in Tamil. The title means ‘The son of Ponni’. Ponni is the other name of the mighty river Kaveri. The book has a total of five volumes with 2,210 pages in it. These books were initially released in series and were later published as books in the year 1955. This novel is purely an addiction. 

Ponniyin Selvan is the most eminent of all novels in Tamil. It is considered to be the greatest novel in Tamil literature. It carries the reader into a whole new mesmerizing world from which one has no heart to return. It gives a new dimension to the beautiful elements and emotions of life like romance, bravery, honesty, devotion, suspense, vengeance, beauty, friendship, and philanthropy. The blend of all the aforementioned emotions keeps the person enthralled throughout. The book is definitely a must-read as it keeps the person at the edge of the seat. More importantly, you can understand the culture, heritage, and lifestyle of the Chola dynasty in detail. 

Do you know that Ponniyin Selvan remains the largest sold book in Tamil? It has a recorded a sales of more than 1,00,000.

What are the names of the five volumes of the series?

  1. புது வெள்ளம் (New floods) : This book unravels the protagonist, Vandhiyadhevan’s journey to Thanjavur. He ends up joining the royal services and falls in enmity with the royalty.
  2. சுழற்காற்று (Whirlwind) : The events of the book revolves around another major protagonist of the story, Arulmozhivarman who later becomes the great emperor  Rajaraja Chola I. It features the stories, causes and tragic outcomes of the ‘Eezhathu Por’ that took place in Sri Lanka.
  3. கொலை வாள் (Sword of Slaughter) : Nandhini devises a revenge plan against the Chola Empire and Adithya Karkalan. She is assisted by Veera Pandiyan.
  4. மணிமகுடம் (The Crown) : The members of the Chola dynasty struggle hard for the crown.
  5. தியாக சிகரம் (The Pinnacle of Sacrifice): The last volume is the climax. The rulers unite to ward off the danger. Miserable deaths of the main characters leave us dejected. The conspiracy is broken in the climax. Arulmozhivarman magnanimously offers the throne to Uthama cholan and gets the name Thyaga Sigaram.

The novel is truly wholesome with its wondrous grandeur. The book is massive with nail-biting twists and turns. 

Who is your favorite character in Ponniyin Selvan?

The story revolves around Vandhiyadhevan who is a brave, sarcastic and adventurous warrior prince. He was the bodyguard and close friend of the chola prince Adithya Karikalan. The emperor of the chola dynasty, Sundara Chola had two sons and a daughter. Aditya Karikalan was the eldest of the three, Kundavai pirattiyar was the second and Arulmozhivarman was the youngest. Kudavai was celebrated for her wit and intelligence. She was ambitious in making the empire wide and majestic. She vowed to not leave her motherland. She raised Arulmozhivaraman as an intelligent prince. He is the real Ponniyin Selvan who later becomes Raja Raja Chola I. These characteristics make Kundavai, a favorite character for a lot of people. So, if you want to know who is your favorite character in Ponniyin Selvan, it is Kundavai. 

Who is the father of Nandini in Ponniyin Selvan?

Nandhini is the main antagonist of the novel Ponniyin Selvan. Information about her origin and birth stayed doubtful at the beginning. She was the daughter of the Pandya ruler Veerapandiyan and Mandakini Dev who was deaf and mute. She possessed bitter feud and hatred towards the Chola royalty as they treated her poor as kid. She was terribly treated in her childhood. This affected her very badly. She had an intense desire for the throne. Her father Veerapandiyan was injured and beheaded by Adithya Karikalam for which she deeply seeked vengeance. She married Periya Pazhuvettaraiyar who was in his sixties to help the Pandya conspirators. So, if you are wondering Nandhinii was whose daughter in Ponniyin Selvan, she is the daughter of the Pandya ruler Veerapandiyan. 

Who are the other characters of Ponniyin Selvan?

Besides the characters mentioned above, there are many other people who take up important roles throughout the novel. Vaanathi was the wife of Raja Raja Chola I and the mother of Rajendra Chola.  Poonguzhali also known as Samuthirakumari was a boat woman who married Senthan Amuthan though she had a crush on Arulmozhivarman. Parthibendra Pallavan was a friend of Aditya Karikalan. Periya Pazhuvettarayar was the valorous chancellor and treasurer of the Chola kingdom. He is known for his 64 scars from battles.  Azhwarkadiyan Nambi was a spy who worked for Sembiyan Mahadevi and the Prime minister. Chinna Pazhuvettarayar was the incharge of Thanjavur fort and Kandhamaaran was the prince of kadamboor. 

What makes Ponniyin Selvan unique?

A pen is always mightier than the sword. This proverb strikes hard while reading this novel. The story is based on historic events and is fictional. The characterisation was wonderfully made and sculptured one would say. The imaginations turned out to be very realistic and the work is the noblest of all. Writer Kalki’s passion is clearly evident from this paragon. ‘ஆவதும் பெண்ணாலே அழிவதும் பெண்ணாலே’ (Aavadhum pennale alivadhum pennale) is a theme that builds up through this novel. Women are the creators as well as destroyers. 

Plot of the novel

The Pandyas try to slaughter the ill and bed-ridden Sundara Chola along with his two princes. They attempt to put a puppet ruler on the throne and they ultimately achieve little success.

Cholas battle with the Pandyas and defeat them. Aditya Karikalan beheads the Pandya king. Pandya takes up the revenge on the cholas and to re-establish the empire for which they thread plans with help of Nandhini who stays in the Chola empire. Her mind and soul are filled with vengeance against Cholas and this motivates her to plot plans for destruction and has an unconvincing desire for the throne. 

Her beauty is said to mesmerize every men on earth. She trained Madurantaka as her puppet. He lacked the skills needed for a good ruler. The Chola prince, Adithya Karikalan falls for their tricks and loses his life while Arulmozhivarman survives and recovers. He altruistically gave up his throne to Uttama Chola.

Learn Tamil online

Stay tuned for more such interesting novels and storylines. During online Tamil classes in Powerkid Tamil Academy, we help children learn Tamil online from native Tamil speaking teachers. Our teachers are child friendly and help them learn live through interactive, engaging sessions. Our sessions are delivered to help the aspirant learn Tamil through English

Sign up to online Tamil classes at or contact us at  +1 (512) 575-3590 or +91 74033 33135. 

Leave your thought here

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Talk to a Tamil language advisor​

Know our curriculum, offers and tutors.

Also ask for the free demo class.

Want to Know More?

Fill the Form to know more details on the course