Appar is one of the four Samaya Acharyas. He was a contemporary of Sambandhar. He was a Vellala of Thiru Amur in the district of Cuddalore in Tamil Nadu. He was born of Pugazhanar and Maathiniar. The parents gave the name "Marulneekkiar" (dispeller of darkness or ignorance) to Appar. Appar means 'father'. Sambandhar gave Marulneekkiar this name. The name Appar was first used by Sambandhar in addressing him in one of several meetings between them. Appar's soul-stirring and sublime odes earned him the title "Thirunavukkarasar" or "the Lord of Speech." Appar was a God-inspired soul. He sang devotional odes or Padigams during his piligrimage to various shrines. He flourished in the middle of the seventh century A.D. He was a mystic and a poet.