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Paediatrics - Kunnath Mana's Traditions

The Kunnath Mana of Thrissur has an Ayurvedic tradition, particularly in paediatrics, for five or six centuries. Many Ashtavaidyan families of Kerala sought help and advice from them. They were the paediatric physicians of the Kochi royal family. For seven successive generations, they had been the recipients of the "Veerasrumkhala" (golden bracelet) awarded by the Maharaja of Kochi to royal physicians. They were also the visiting physicians in the Travancore and Saamoothiri Kovilakams, as also in Tamil Nadu and even Kasi. Ministers, several high-ranking officials and a large number of ordinary people have been treated by this family.

The family started a "Baalaamrutha Vaidysaala" in 1925, which continues to operate out of Thrissur even now, but under a different name, Kunnath Mana Ayurvedic Medicals. They used to have another establishment, the Dhanwanthari Vilasam Vaidyasala, which ceased to function.

The present physician of the Vaidyasala, Dr P K Vasudevan Namboodiri, after graduating in Ayurvedam from Tripunithura, served in several Government Ayurvedic Hospitals, and retired as a senior doctor. Doctors Anand and Suhas of the new generation are also following the family tradition.

It is said that Kunnath Mana originally belonged to Meppayur in Kozhikode District and was one of the eight Namboothiri families brought to Thrissur from Kurumbranad, some six centuries ago by the Raja of Kochi with the assistance of the Saamoothiri to perform the priestly duties at Vadakkunathha Temple, since the local Namboothiris had been forbidden from such duties by Parasuraman. One "Melsaanthi" from Kunnath Mana was so devoted to Paramasivan that in his old age, he had a divine vision and received certain Ayurvedic texts (Granthhams) from the Mukhamandapam of the temple. He mastered these and transferred the knowledge through generations. These sacred Granthhams are still with them.

| Article No:20.5 | Last update of this article:22nd February 2001 |
Article prepared by: Dr. P K V Namboodiri, Kunnath Mana, "Sooryakanthy", Santhy Nagar, Thiruvampady, Thrissur - 680 001. Phone : 0487-334535

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