The early Pandyan dynasty of the Sangam literature went into obscurity during the invasion of the Kalabhras. The dynasty revived under Kadungon Pandyan in the early 6th century, pushed the Kalabhras out of the Tamil country and ruled from Madurai. They again went into decline with the rise of the Cholas in the 9th century and were in constant conflict with them. The Pandyas allied themselves with the Sinhalese and the Cheras in harassing the Chola empire until they found an opportunity for reviving their fortunes during the late 13th century.
The following is a partial list of Pandyan emperors who ruled during the Sangam age:
Nedunj Cheliyan I ( Aariyap Padai Kadantha Nedunj Cheliyan )
Nedunj Cheliyan II ( Pasumpun Pandiyan)
Nedunj Cheliyan III ( Talaiyaalanganathu Seruvendra Nedunj Cheliyan )
Musiri Mutriya Cheliyan
After the close of the Sangam age, the first Pandyan empire was established by Kadungon in the 6th century defeating the Kalabhras. The following is a chronological list of the Pandya emperors is based on an inscription found on the Vaigai riverbeds.
Kadungon (560 AD - 590 AD)
Maravarman Avani Culamani (590 AD - 620 AD)
Cezhiyan Cendan (620 AD - 640 AD)
Arikesari Maravarman Nindraseer Nedumaaran (640 AD - 674 AD)
Kochadaiyan Ranadhiran (675 AD - 730 AD)
Arikesari Parankusa Maravarman Rajasinga (730 AD - 765 AD)
Parantaka Nedunjadaiyan (765 AD - 790 AD)
Rasasingan II (790 AD - 800 AD)
Varagunan I (800 AD - 830 AD)
Sirmara Srivallabha (830 AD - 862 AD)
Varaguna II (862 AD - 880 AD)
Parantaka Viranarayana (862 AD - 905 AD)
Rajasima Pandian II (905 AD - 920 AD)
Under the Cholas
The Chola domination of the Tamil country began in earnest during the reign of Parantaka Chola II. Chola armies led by Aditya Karikala, son of Parantaka Chola II defeated Vira Pandya I in battle. The Pandyas were assisted by the Sinhalese forces of Mahinda IV. Pandyas were driven out of their territories and had to seek refuge in the island of Sri Lanka. This was the start of the long exile of the Pandyas.
The following list gives the names of the Pandya kings who were active during the 10th and the first half of 11th century. It is difficult to give their date of accession and duration of their rule. Nevertheless their presence in the southern country require recognition.
Sundara Pandya I
Vira Pandya I (946 AD - 966 AD)
Vira Pandya II
Amarabhujanga Pandian was defeated and killed by The Great Rajaraja Chola I and the entire pandian kingdom was replaced by the series of Chola viceroys with the title Chola Pandyas. The following list gives the names of the Chola viceroys who ruled from Madurai from 1020 AD.
Jatavarman Sundara Chola Pandya
Maravarman Vikrama Chola Pandya
Maravarman Parakrama Chola Pandya
Jatavarman Chola Pandya
Srivallabha Manakulachala (1101 - 1124)
Maaravaramban Seervallaban (1132 - 1161)
Parakrama Pandiyan (1161 - 1162)
Kulasekara Pandyan III
Vira Pandyan III
Jatavarman Srivallaban (1175 - 1180)
The 13th century is the greatest period in the history of the Pandyan Empire. Their power reached its zenith under Jatavarman Sundara Pandyan in the middle of the 13th century. Kulothunga III made Vikrama Pandian as the ruler to the Pandya kingdom.
Sundaravaramban Kulasekaran II (1238 - 1240)
Maaravaramban Sundara Pandiyan II (1241 - 1251)
Jatavarman Sundara Pandyan (1251 - 1268)
Maaravaramban Kulasekara Pandyan I (1268 - 1308)
Sundara Pandyan IV (1309 - 1327)
Vira Pandyan IV (1309 - 1345)