Tiruttakkatevar (TEE-rew-TAH-kah-TEH-vahr) is the author of the celebrated Tamil epic Cīvakacintāmani (c. 900 c.e.). A descendant of the Cōlas, Tiruttakkatevar is said to have become a Jaina ascetic at a young age and lived in Madurai. The epic hero of Cīvakacintāmani, Cīvakan, is depicted as the perfect man—a peerless lover, brave warrior, and master of all arts, who is gentle and considerate, full of sympathy and consideration for all living beings, and in total harmony with his surroundings. Tiruttakkatevar’s ascetic status prompted non-Jaina poets to challenge his contribution to the akam (internal) genre, which consists of love poems. To counter this criticism, he composed an erotic epic poem titled Mananul (the book of marriage), the publication of which triggered doubts regarding his ascetic status. It is said that he held a red-hot iron rod in his bare hands to prove his celibacy.