Mārimuttapillai

Mārimuttapillai was born in Tillai Vidangan, a village located at the north east side of Cidambaram. Mārimuttapillai became adept in composing songs at a very young age. His eldest son Deivaṅgal Perumāḷ Pillai and the third son Kumārasāmi Pillai were Tamil scholars. His first son, Deivaṅgal Perumāḷ Pillai composed a Prabandham 'Umaiyavaḷ mālai' on Goddess Umaiyammai, when he was 12 years old. Deivaṅgal Perumāḷ Pillai became mentally ill after he completed the prabandham. Mārimuttapillai got worried about his son and prayed to Lord Naṭarāja to cure his son's illness. One day, when he was taking rest after the midnight pūja, Lord Nararāja came into his dream and said that he should composed a prabandham for this village, to get rid off his worries and God disappeared. Pillai woke up and went to the temple and prayed. As ordered by the Lord, he composed the work 'Puliyūr veṇba'. After composing this, his son recovered from his mental illness.

It is said that Mārimuttapillai has composed the following works! Cidambarēsar virali vidu tūdu, Varuṇapuri ādimulisar Kuravañji, Ādimulisar nondi nātakam, Puliyūr śiñgāra vēlar patigam, Vidangēsar patigam, 50 songs on Lord Natarāja, Irōda bandham-citrakavi, Vaṇṇaṅgal and many other songs. Among his 50 musical compositions, only 25 are available now.

His songs have been composed with beautiful arthabhāva. His ninda sthuti compositions are 'Vīdum ambalamāgi nirum antaramanir, vēlai pollappagiyō' (Vilāsini (29) Cappu); 'Enna pizhappundran pizhaippaiya, idai eṇṇi pārttāl yārkkum pazhipaiyya' (Vēḷāvaḷi (23) Ādi); 'Ummai pōl āṭṭai eḍuttu ambalattil nirpār oruvarai kāṇēn aiyya' (Bānukīravāṇi (45) Ādi); 'Innam vairam undran neñjilē iruppatu enne kāraṇattirkaiyya' (Ratnāṅgi (63) Ādi); 'Ennēramum kālai tūkki koṇḍu irukkira vagai ēdaiyya' (Tōḍi-Ādi) (In this song he describes the reason for Naṭarāja's dancing posture); 'Pāruṅgal vandu pāruṅgal' (Vasukari (66) Rūpakam); 'Ambalattādal naḍippadenbadai' (Kaumāri (11) Ādi); 'Enna kāriyattukku' (Dharmavati-Ādi). It is rare to find musical compositions of this nature. The songs will be pleasing, if they are rendered with clear pronunciation of words. All the caraṇa-s of a song can be rendered, when the singer sings with absolute perfection of words. To express their views, many caraṇa-s in a song were composed by scholars.

Mārimuttapillai has composed songs with the temple Mudra 'tillai'. The other mudra-s used by him are 'ten kailāsam', 'ponnambalam', 'bhūlōka kailāsam' and 'puliyūr'. He says that mukti can be attained by telling the word 'Śivacidambaram' once the song 'Orukkal śivacidambaram'. In the song 'Kālaittūkki nindrāḍum deivamē' (Yadukula kāmbhōji-Ādi), he give references that, Musical instruments Yāzh and Maddaḷam were played by Nandi and Nāradar. In the song 'Edukkittanai mōditan unakku' (Suruṭṭi-Rūpakam) the composer prays Lord Naṭarāja to forgive him. There are references about the stories of Śivapurāṇam, in his compositions.

The great composer Mārimuttapillai passed away in the year 1787 A.D. (14th day of Cittirai month). It is to be noted that Aruṇācalakavirāyar and Mārimuttapillai were contemporaries.