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Tikkana Somayaji

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tikkana somayaji

Tikkana (or Tikkana Somayaji) (1205–1288) was born into a family of Shaivite family during the Golden Age of the Kakatiya dynasty. He was the second poet of the "Trinity of Poets (Kavi Trayam)" that translated Mahabharatamu into Telugu over a period of centuries. Nannaya Bhattaraka was the first, though he translated only two and a half chapters. Tikkana translated the final 15 chapters, but did not undertake translating the half-finished Aranya Parvamu. The Telugu people remained without this last translation for more than a century, until it was translated by Errana. Tikkana was born in Guntur. There is a school and library named after him Tikkana was the Prime Minister (hence the title Tikkanamatya) of Manumasiddhi, the king of Nellore and a descendant of Kakatiya dynasty. When Manumasiddhi was dethroned by his cousins,

Tikkana visited Orugallu (the capital of Kakatiya dynasty and today’s Warangal) to request the help of the Ganapatideva. The Emperor gave him a grand welcome in Warangal and restored Nellore throne to Manumasiddhi. Tikkana dedicated his first literary work Nirvachanottara Ramayanamu, to Ganapatideva. In this work he narrated the later part of Ramayanamu, the story of Sita’s banishment to forests and the birth of Lava and Kusa to Sita in the forest. Later, Tikkana translated Mahabharatamu and dedicated it to Hariharanadha. Tikkana’s other literary contributions include Vijayasenamu, Kavivaagbandhamu, Krishnasatakamu, etc. Though he was second to Nannayya in attempting to translate Mahabharatamu and second poet among the Trinity of Poets, he is second to none in his political, religious and literary accomplishments.