Mana Sanskriti (Our Culture)

Issue 85

5106 Kali Era , taarana Year,  pushya month
1926 Salivahana Era
taarana Year,  pushya month
2062 Vikramarka Era, 
taarana Year,  pushya month
 2005 AD, February

Ramakrishna Kavi Manavalli (1866-1957)

Ramakrishna Kavi Manavalli, popularly known as kavigaaru, was a manuscriptolologist at prachyalikhita pustaka bhandagaram (library of ancient scripts) in Chennapuri (Chennai or Madras) and a doyen of indological research.  

Manavalli family is a Brahmin pundit (scholar) family and kavi's ancestors were writers and poets. His ancestors like Thyagayya, Gangadharasastri and Narasimhasastri were all reputed litterateurs. Thyagayya wrote kaasiyaatracharitra.  Gangadharasastri and Narasimhasastri were Sanskrit pundits.  Gangadharasastri received several awards and titles from the British government during Queen Victoria's regime.

Kavigaaru  was a polyglot.  The title Kavigaaru was given to him not because he was poet, but because he was a great scholar in six languages: Samskritamu (Sanskrit), Andhramu (Telugu), Aravamu (Tamil), Kannadamu, Malayalamu and English. He was known to be one of the top six Sanskrit pundits during his time. For the government of Baroda, he prepared Bharatakosa and brought out a critical edition of Bharata`s Natya Sastra with Abhivanana Gupta`s commentary “abhinava bhaarati” for the first time.

Kavigaaru used to collect palm-leaf texts from villages and towns for the library.  He used to review them and analyze them for publication. He introduced to Telugu people several ancient texts, in association with Prabhakarasastri Veturi. Kavigaaru published ancient texts in a book series under the title "vismrita kavulu."   One of his original works is vatsaraja charitamu.  

In 1926, he was transferred to Rajamahendravaramu as an assistant teacher at Government Higher Grade Elementary Training School.  Later, in 1938, joined tirupati praachya parisoadhana samstha and worked there until 1955.  Later, tirumala tirupati devasthaanam provided him support until he died in 1957.

Source: naa vaangmaya mitrulu, Kameswararao Tekumalla

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Vepachedu Educational Foundation, Inc
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