Ulloor S. Parameswara Iyer


Ulloor S. Parameswara Iyer, or simply Ulloor, was a celebrated poet and historian in Malayalam literature. Along with Kumaran Asan and Vallathol Narayana Menon, he was regarded as one of the modern triumvirate poets of Kerala in the early 20th century. Ulloor was born on June 6, 1877, in Thamarassery Illam in Perunna, Changanassery, Kerala. He attended school in Changanassery before his family moved to Thiruvananthapuram in 1890, where he continued his education. He graduated from Maharajas College with Honors in Philosophy in 1897 and joined the Travancore State Services. He went on to obtain a graduate degree in Law, as well as master’s degrees in Malayalam and Tamil. He held various positions in the government service, including Land Revenue and Income Tax Commissioner, before retiring as the Chief Secretary of the State.

Ulloor was known for his classical style of writing, which featured Sanskrit words, mythological references, satire, and scholarship. His most significant works include Umakeralam, a mahakavya published in 1914, and Kerala Sahitya Charitram, a comprehensive history of the Malayalam language, culture, and literature. The latter was published in five volumes by the University of Travancore after Ulloor’s death. He also wrote children’s poems, including the popular song Kakke, Kakke, Koodevide.

In 1956, the Government of Kerala established the Mahakavi Ulloor Memorial Library and Research Centre in his honor. The center was later moved to a new location in Jagathy, Thiruvananthapuram, and was inaugurated by S. Radhakrishnan, the then-president of India. Ulloor passed away on June 15, 1949.