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Nambuthiris are migrants from Ahichatram ancient capital of Nepal ( Aswathamas capital). Aryan Brahmins and Naga soldiers were brought from Ahichatra by Kadamba king Mayura Varma in 345 AD and settled them at the coastal Karnataka. From the Ahichatram Brahmins Nambuthiris and other Tulu Brahmins evolved. The Ahichatram Nagas were Nairs who mixed with Bunts of Tulunadu. Both were Matriarchal. Nairs thus have Tulu-Nepalese ethnicity,
Some Tulu Brahmins like Embirandiri did appear during the Later Chera Period (800 AD to 1102 AD) period. Kerala was ruled by Tamil Villavars who did not like Tulu people and their Nair-Bunt armies. In none of the Tamil records until 1335 AD the word Nambuthiri occurs.
BRAHMINS DURING LATER CHERA PERIOD(800 AD to 1102 AD)
The truth is there is no mention of Nairs and Namboothiri in any medieval Tamil inscriptions, inscribed by the Cheran rulers. None of the books written during Later Chera era mention Nair or Namboothiris. The priests during Later Chera period (800 AD to 1120 AD) were called
3. Pattarakar (பட்டாரகர்)(പട്ടാരകർ),
9. Sadukkal(சாதுக்கள்) (ചാതുക്കൾ)
Never Nambuthiris are mentioned. Only Tamil Brahmins existed. Most of them were found in Chola and Pandyan countries
Until 1120 AD Kerala was solely ruled by Tamils.
But at 1120 a Tulu invasion occured.
A Tulu invader called Banapperumal who was the Brother of Tulu king Kavi Alupendra attacked Kerala with 350000 strong Nair army (A mass migration of Tulu people to Kerala with Arab support).
Banapperumal occupied Northern Kerala upto Kodungaloor.
The Chera-Villavar Tamil dynasty had shifted its capital to Kollam in 1102 AD.
Banapperumal ruled Kerala for 36 years. But around 1156 AD Banapperumal embraced Islam and went to Arabia.
The Nairs and Nambuthiris who accompanied Banapperumal remained in Northern Malabar. Banapperumal’s son became the first Kolathiri ruler. But the Tulu king was helpless as the army of Nairs and Nambuthiris were not Tulu but of Ahichatram origin. Nairs were controlled by Nambuthiris and not by the Tulu king.
In that period Nambuthiris gained the right to have Sambandham (marriageless relationship) and also the son thus born to Nambuthiris can only become the next king. Soon the Tulu dynasty was converted to a Tulu-Nepalese dynasty with Nambuthiri blood.
Nambuthiris also had the right have Sambandham with Nair women too. Thus Nambuthiris used Sambandham to control the Tulu dynasty as well as the Nair soldiers. Arabs were behind the Tulu invaders who wanted to have a strong Base in Kerala. In fact with Arab support only Banapperumal and his military commander Padamala Nair brought Nairs and Nambuthiris inside Kerala in 1120 AD.
The Tulu people were present only in the Northern districts ie Kasragod , Kannur, Kozhikode and Malappuram district between 1156 AD to 1335 AD.Nambuthiris were restricted to these area.
Kannur was ruled by Kolathiri who was the son of Banapperumal.
Kozhikode was ruled by Kolathiri who was son of Banapperumal’s sister Sridevi. Another son of Sridevi called Mahabali embraced Islam and was called Saifudeen Mohammed Ali who established the Araikal kingdom. Yet another son of Sridevi born to a Nambuthiri
established a small kingdom at Perumbadappu near Vanneri near Ponnani in the Malappuram district.
After 1156 the Cherai dynasty at Kollam ruled all Kerala including the Tulu principalities in the northern Kerala. Nambuthiri influence did not extend beyond Ponnani lake.