Adipattha Nayanar is one of the 63 nayanars
listed in the Periya Puranam
. He was a fisherman and was born in Nulaipadi near Nagapattinam
. He was a great devotee of Lord Shiva
. By way of an offering to the Lord, each day he used to allow one fish to go. Once, the Lord decided to test the depth of his devotion. From that day, he could catch only one fish in a day. In accordance with his usual practice he let it go and he went without food. One day he caught a golden fish, but he let the fish to escape. Seeing this the Lord became highly pleased. Shiva appeared before Adipattha Nayanar and blessed him.