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Many great poets and men of letters from ancient times belonged to Thiruvananthapuram. Two most outstanding poets patronized by the royal family of Travancore were Unnayi Warrier and Kunchan Nambiar. The reign of Maharaja Swathi Thirunal (1813–1846), the royal composer, saw the golden age of Carnatic music in Kerala. The contribution of Swathi Thirunal in the realm of music has enriched even the cultural heritage of India. Irayimman Thampi (1782–1856), a contemporary of Maharaja Swathi Thirunal, was another composer of great originality and deep learning. Vidwan Koi Thampuran was also a scholar and poet who belonged to this period.
Thiruvananthapuram witnessed a cultural renaissance in twentieth century. Kerala Varma Valiakoi Thampuran (1845–1914), who spent a major part of his life in Thiruvananthapuram, translated Kalidasa’s Abhijñānaśākuntalam into Malayalam which won him the title of Kerala Kalidasa . He is also regarded as the father of modern Malayalam prose.
The contributions of A. R. Raja Raja Varma (1863–1918), known as ”Kerala Panini”, marked an important stage in the development of Malayalam literature. Another notable writer is C. V. Raman Pillai (1858–1922), who was a novelist par excellence. Mahakavi Kumaran Asan (1873–1924) and Mahakavi Ulloor S. Parameswara Iyer (1877–1949) were the two outstanding poets from Thiruvananthapuram. Kumaran Asan was the true representative of the cultural renaissance. Ulloor was not only a poet, but also a scholar, researcher and historian.
The two all-time great social reformers in Kerala Narayana Guru and Chattampi Swamikal also were born here. They contributed much to the Malayalam literature through their books.Contributions of Thiruvananthapuram to painting especially murals are immense. A strong film and theatre culture also prevails in the city.
The general cuisine of the people is Keralite cuisine, which is generally characterised by an abundance of coconut and spices.
The city comes to a festive mood during the festival season of Onam in August/September, and during the tourist season later in the year. The state government conducts the tourism week celebrations every year during Onam with cultural events taking place at various centers in the city. The other major events include the annual flower show, the Attukal Pongala, the Aaraat of Padmanabha Swamy Temple, the Beemapally Uroos, Vettucaud Perunaal, etc.
For further information on the culture of the capital, log on to thiruvananthapuram.net
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