Thiruvalluvar (Tamil: திருவள்ளுவர்) is a celebrated Tamil poet who wrote the Thirukkural, a work on ethics in Tamil literature. He is also known by other names like Deiva Pulavar (Divine Poet), Valluvar and Poyyamozhi Pulavar, Senna Pothar, Gnana Vettiyan .
According to tradition Thiruvalluvar was born at Mylapore. His wife Vasuki was a chaste and devoted lady, an ideal wife, who never disobeyed the orders of her husband, but always carried them out implicitly. Thiruvalluvar showed people that a person could lead the life of a Grihastha or householder, and at the same time, lead a divine life or a life of purity and sanctity. He showed people that there was no necessity to leave the family and become a Sannyasin to lead a divine life of purity and sanctity. All his wise sayings and teachings are now in book form and known as ‘Thirukkural’. The Tamil Calendar is dated from that period and referred as Thiruvalluvar Aandu (Year).
The time period of Thiruvalluvar's existence has been based on mostly linguistic evidences rather than archeological evidences since none such has been determined. His period has been estimated to be between 2nd century BC and 8th century AD
Thirukkural is one of most revered ancient works in the Tamil. Kural is considered as 'common creed', as it shows the way for human morals and betterment in life. The Kural has been translated into most languages, likely next only to the Bible, Qur'an and Gita .. The Latin translation of Thirukkural made by Constanzo Beschi in 1730 helped significantly to make known to European intellectuals the richness and beauty of Tamil literature.
Thirukkural is a combined word formed by joining the two words Thiru and Kural, i.e. Thiru + Kural = Thirukkural.
Thirukkural is divided into three sections. Section one deals with Aram, good ethical behavior with conscience and honor ("right conduct"), Section two discusses Porul, the right manner of conducting worldly affairs, and Section three dwells on Inbam, love between man and woman. The First section has 38 chapters, Second has 70 chapters and the Third 25 chapters. Each Chapters consists of 10 couplets orkurals thus making 1330 couplets in total. Although two section, Aram and Inbam are devoted to private life of an individual more than half the couplets in Thirukural are grouped under Porul which discusses ethics in public life. Thus Thiruvalluvar gives more importance to righteous living in public life.