Birth and life
Nambiyandar Nambi was born in the town of Thirunaraiyur into the tradition of the Adi Shaivites, brahmin priests in the temples of Lord Shiva. As per Nambiyandar Nambi Puranam also called as Tirumurai Kanda Puranam, Nambi's patron Rajaraja Chola (ராசா ராசா மன்னவன் அபயகுல சேகரன்) requested him to collect the hymns of the three great poet-saints Sambandar, Appar and Sundarar. Nambi managed to get palm-leaf manuscripts of the hymns, though some had been eaten away by termites. They were able to recover around ten percent of the entire set of hymns. Nambi also wrote a memoir of the lives of the sixty-three great devotees mentioned by Suntarar; the Tiruttondar Tiruvandhadhi. His hymns in praise of Sambandar and Appar provide some biography of those saints.