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Thirukkural-On Wise Friendship-Kural-444

Thamir paeriyaar thamaraa olukudhal

vanmaiyu lellaan thalai

A king, wise enough to have men of greater wisdom than he to advise him,

Shall be a really powerful ruler.

V V S Iyer translates the kural in Biblical language as follows:

“If those that are worthier than thyself have become thy intimates, thou hast acquired a strength, before which all other strength paleth".

It needs a certain greatness in the king himself, to recognise and be intimate with great men of true learning and ability and to abide by their advice. In his Arthasastra, Kautilya also underscores the same idea, dealing with the need for the eking to cultivate friendship with the elders. (Book I, Ch.5)

this strength of able friends on his side will prove to be more powerful than all the vast armies and impregnable fortresses, according to Parimel Azhagar.

Story first published: Wednesday, August 11, 2010, 12:52 [IST]
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