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Vadakkanpattu (northern ballads)

Tales of valiant heroes of North Kerala of a bygone era, composed in verse in a pure rustic style. They extol the chivalry and valour of the Ankachekavars or warriors who waged many a famous duel. Some of these ballads have survived the passage of time in the form of work songs.

Though of not much literary merit, these ballads are significant due to their historical relevance. The socio-political situations of North Malabar during the 16th and 17th centuries were clearly depicted in these songs.

The Samurai like heroes portrayed in these ballads were masters of the martial arts of Kerala and their tales inspired later generations to master the ingenuous art of `Kalarippayattu'.

Most of these ballads were based on the two ancestral houses of Puthooram and Thacholi and the oft depicted characters were 'Aromal Chekavar', 'Thacholi Othenan' and 'Unniyarcha'.

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