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Thirukural-On Choice Of Right Time-Kural-487

Pollena aangae puramvaeraar kaalampaarthu

Ul vaerppar olliyavar.

Even where injustice provokes the wise, they do not anger immediately,

They smoulder inwardly but bide their time.

Wise men do not get provoked into immediate action, even when they feel that grave injustice is being done to them. They will suffer patiently for the time being and await the right opportunity for taking appropriate and effective remedial action.

Some of these ideas are at variance with the poet"s own directives in Arathupal, but it may be good to repeat in this context that the instructions here are for the king and, therefore, couched in pragmatic patterns suitable for the good of the king and his realm.

A Biblical parallel is as follows:

“A fool"s wrath is presently known, a prudent man covers his shame".

(Proverbs:12, 16)

The phrase “Pollena viyartu" occurs in Jeevaka Chinthamani 256.

On the choice of right time

Thiruvalluvar in Thirukural emphasises on the choice of right time in Kurals 481 to 490.


Thirukural is an ethical treatise belonging to Tamil classical literature, written by Thiruvalluvar. In Kural 486, Thiruvalluvar points out that the right time looked upon by the wise to even unleash their anger. Ramanandha Adigalar Foundation with the English translation of Thirukural has made it available for a larger reading public.

Story first published: Thursday, November 11, 2010, 17:13 [IST]
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