Assamese or Ahomiya developed into a literary language as late as 13AD. Spoken by nearly 60% of the stateâ€™s population. The language has close affinities to Bengali. Assamese is spoken all along the Brahmaputra valley and sounds quite similar to Bengali, except for a few differences. In fact, the old text Charya Padas is claimed by both Old Assamese and Old Bengali. The oldest Assamese writer was perhaps Hema Saraswati, who wrote his famous Prahlada Charita in the late 13th century AD. Madhava Kandali (14th century) was the next well-known figure, having written a vernacular Ramayana. Prominent among 15th century works were Durgavaraâ€™s Giti Ramayana, poems and songs from the Puranas by Pitambara and Manakara and the mass of literature called Mantras of unknown authorship.