Published: 24 Aug 2020 10 PMUpdated: 24 Aug 2020 10 PM  Sakthi Vikatan
Author: Sailapathy
 1. ''Do come to our village, Ammā. We will fit you with a handful of bangles.'

2. About 600 years ago, the bangle sellers of Tirunirayanur village near Kumbakonam went to Samayapuram for the Pañguni (Mid-March-Mid-April) festival to sell bangles. The festival was over.

3. Annai appeared as a young girl in the dream of an elderly bangle seller. She extended her hand and asked him whether he could fit her with bangles.

4. The merchant said he would fit Annai with bangles. He negotiated the bangles around her wrist. All the bangles broke. He had no more.

5. In his life as a bangle seller, he never experienced such failure. The disappointed merchant told the young girl, “Do come to our village, I will fit you with the bangles.” The girl in the dream laughed out loud and said to him, ''you don’t need to fit me with bangles. If asked, I will fit all the villagers with the bangles.” Then, she disappeared, and the merchant woke up and saw broken bangles before him.

6. Besides that incident, all the villagers inclusive of the merchant had bullous eruptions all over the body. (It is most likely the umbilicated pear-like blisters characteristic of smallpox.) The elderly merchant shed tears and supplicated to Amman, ''Thāye! Are you playing with the simple villagers?'' The temple priest ran towards him and said, “Ammā in her incorporeal voice, ordered me to give you these gold coins for the broken bangles. She added that the application of the sacred ash on the people with the pearly blisters will cure them.

7. Hearing the Ethereal Voice, the people were astonished. The lesions disappeared after applying the sacred ash. As all worshipped her, Annai appeared in the sky, blessed all and said, ''According to your desire, I will stay for 13 days yearly in your village. I will come seeking jasmine flowers and bangles for  my forearms. I will accept your Puja and be joyous.'' She disappeared soon after that.

8. Since then, following the new moon for 13 days in the month of Vaikāsi (Mid-May to Mid-June), the people in Tirunaraiyur celebrate the festival.
She accepts flowers and bangles from the devotees and gives them blessings and compassion. It is the established belief that supplication to the Akāsa Māriamman facilitates early marriage.