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Nair Pattalam
(Nair Brigade of Travancore)

Lord Wellington has observed about Nair Pattalam as follows: " I like to see these nairs who never care their lives who lead an army of similar people even against mighty ocean of enemies and fight to win like a hell-fire "

The Nair Brigade was the army of the erstwhile kingdom of Travancore in India. King Marthanda Varma's (1706 - 1758) personal bodyguard was called 'Thiruvithamkoor Nair Pattalam' (Travancore Nair Brigade). Their Headquarters, in Thiruvananthapuram, of the Nair Brigade of Travancore was in the building now housing the Legislative Museum of Kerala.  Nairs, Warriors of Kshtriya community in the region, was responsible for the security of Travancore and other local kingdoms.

After the mutiny of AD 1805 against Velu Thampi, most of the Nair battalions of Travancore had been disbanded, and after Velu Thampi's revolt, almost all of the remaining Travancore forces were also disbanded, with the Company undertaking to serve the Raja in cases of external and internal aggression

The Travancore army was officially referred to as the Travancore Nair Brigade in 1818. In the early days, only Nairs were admitted into this brigade. Later, the unit was expanded and several sub units were formed. The name Nair Brigade remained unchanged, even after following the admittance of non-Nairs to its folds.

The area where the Travancore Brigade was settled came to be called Palayam, which means army settlement. The area is still called so, even though it has changed to a market. The famous Pazhavangadi Ganapathi Temple in Thiruvananthapuram was owned and maintained by the Travancore Brigade. This temple is now owned and maintained by the Indian Army, after the integration of Travancore Army with the Indian Forces.

The Muslim Cavalry soldiers of the Nair Brigade of Travancore, who had settled in Sasthamangalam and Vattiyoorkavu areas in Thiruvananthapuram, built an impressive mosque in Vattiyoorkavu.