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Questions on Alvars

From: Eswar Josyula (76142.1306_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Mon Aug 07 1995 - 13:31:02 PDT

I have some basic questions on the "Alvars".

Is it Alvar or Alzvar or Azhvar?  What is the meaning of this word?
What is the sanskrit equivalent of this word?

The number of Alvars is 12.  Who recognized these individuals as Alvars
for the first time? Are there more to come?

-Eswar