Pudukkottai Places of Interest
 

Adhanakkottai :

Historical importance : It is here a famous battle was waged. In 1780 and 1781 Hider Ali overran the Tamil country. After taking over Thanjavur he was entering the Tondaiman territory. The village could keep the invader at bay, thanks to the cunning strategy of an inhabitant of the village. Gandhara was an enterprising, widely travelled Brahmin. Being a linguist, he spoke to the leader of the army in Hindustani and invited the army for a grand feast arranged in its honour. The exhausted army readily agreed. During the feast and the repast, the Tondaiman army surrounded them and they had no other way except to retreat. But when the army returned after a few days the Pudukkottai army was well prepared. A man concealed himself in the hollow trunk of a tree and shot the commander of the Hider force. This contributed to the defeate of Hider Ali. The British were overjoyed. In the 18th century the Tondaiman ruler gave away the village to the Brahmins as Brahmadeyam. There exists an agraharam as a result. The traveller’s bungalow was built in 1833 for the use of the Collector of Thanjavur, who was, at the time, ex-officio political agent of the Pudukkottai State.

The monuments : Siva and Sastha temples The presiding deity of the Siva temple is named Kulottungesvara after King Kulottunga Chozha who installed the lingam. Adhanakkottai finds mention in a partially defaced inscription on the walls of a ruined Sastha temple. This inscription refers to the village as Adan-oor-kottai, meaning the fort of Adan’s village. There is, however, no trace of a fort. The inscription also mentions a Siva temple built during the reign of Kulottunga III, a Mariamman temple and a temple for Ayyanar, none of which could be found today.

Aranthangi :

The second largest town in Pudukkottai district after the headquarters. Aranthangi was the most populor locality in the south of the Thanjavur district till it was added to Pudukkottai. The main centre of attraction is a ruined fort.

Avudaiyar Temple :

40 kms. from Pudukkottai. The Athmanathaswami temple situated here contains graceful life-size sculptures which are of absorbing interest. The car of this temple is renowned for its wood carvings. The temple is noted for zephyr (granite roof) work. The sanctum sanctorum is covered with copper plate and is similar to the Chidambaram Natarajar temple. Ph : 04371-233301.

Ayur :

AvurChurch

28 kms. from Pudukkottai. The old chapel here was constructed in 1547 A.D. by Fr, John Venantius Bouchet and the new Roman Catholic Church was constructed in 1747 A.D. Tamil Scholar Rev. Father Joseph Beschi (Veerama Munivar) also served in this Church. The Easter Passion play followed by Car Festival, takes place in summer which attracts people of all faiths.

Government Museum :

Situated at Thirrukokarnam, the museum is at a distance of 5 kms. from Pudukkottai railway Station. The wide range of collections in the Sections of Geology, Zoology, Paintings. Anthropology, Epigraphy, Historical records, etc. are very interesting. The fine Sculptures and bronzes of various periods are the attractive items of the Museum. Timings 9 a.m to 5. p.m Entrance fee: Free. Holidays FridayPhone : 04322-236247.

Kaliyappatti :

Close to the village, Kaliyappatti, is a small but interesting Siva temple built entirely of well dressed granite blocks, belonging to 9th –10th century A.D. The temple is similar to that of the famous Muvar-koil of Kodumbalur. The temple is one among the earliest temples of the Chozha design, and plays an important role in the study of temple architecture in Tamilnadu.
Approach : Kaliyappatti is a small village near Kunnandarkoil. It is located in the Kiranur-Killukkottai route. There are only a few buses running in this route. Taxi service is available from Kiranur, Pudukkottai and Tiruchi.

Kattubava Pallivasal :

KattubavaPallivasal

30 kms. from Pudukkottai. One of the Islamic centres, this is located on the Thirumayam-Madurai Highway. Both Hindus and Muslims visit this place. Annual “Urs” takes place in the month of Rabiyul Ahir.

Kiranur :

A place that shows traces of occupation from very early times and has pre-historic burial sites. There is a 9th century AD Siva temple with many important inscriptions. It is an important Muslim centre. Presently a business centre and also an important junction in the Pudukkottai - Tiruchi road.

Approach : Kiranur lies on the Pudukkottai-Tiruchirappalli Road and 25 km away from Pudukkottai. It is the headquarters of the Kolattur Taluk.KodumbalurNandi It is well connected with Tiruchirappalli, Pudukkottai, Karaikkudi with regular transport services.

Kizhanilai :

The place, Kizhanilai contains a dilapidated fort. From the days of the imperial Chozha-s and the Pandya-s upto the 19th century, Kizhanilai was an important military station. The name Kizhanilai means ‘the eastern gate’, as distinguished from the adjacent village called Mela-nilai. Between them is Pudhunilai.
Approach : Kizhanilai is a village, 33 km from Pudukkottai. One can reach this place via Thirumayam and Kanadukaththaan.

Manamelkudi :

Manamelkudi is a village Panchayat in Avudaiyarkoil Taluk of Pudukkottai District with a population of 10072 as per 1991 census. It extended over an area of 1135.24 hect. It is situated along the Bay of Bengal and well connected by a major district, road leading form Aranthangi which is 43 kms. away and passing through the Taluk headquarters Avudaiyarkoil which is 32 kms. to the west.

Kodumbalur :

Kodumbalur is the site of some structural temples of great beauty. Their merit marks them out as among the most outstanding monuments in India. Two monuments alone are survived. They are the celebrated Muvar-koil and Muchu-kundesvara-koil. There are survivals of an Aivar-koil and of another Siva temple. It is Muvar-koil, which is the centre of attraction. These temples are considered to be the forerunners of the great Imperial chozha temples. Some important inscriptions are also found here.

Approach : Kodumbalur is located on Pudukkottai-Kudumiyamalai-Manapparai main road about 35 kilometres from Pudukkottai. And it lies 5 kilometres away from Tiruchi - Madurai highway. Bus facility is available from Viralimalai and Manapparai.

Kudumiyamalai :

Kudumiyamalai is an important site in the district famous for a few old temples of considerable beauty as well as archaeological interest. It is one of the oldest historic townships in the tract. The township was called as Thiru-nalak-kunram in earlier inscriptions and Sikhanallur in later ones. The village had extended all around a hillock, at the foot of which, on the east, is the famous Kudumiyamalai temple complex. On and near a hillock there are four temples including a fine cave temple and a very large Siva temple, called Sikhanathasvami-koil, containing exquisite sculptures. The musical inscription found on a face of the cave-temple is important in the musical history of India. There are nearly a hundred and twenty inscriptions in Kudumiyamalai.

Approach : Kudumiyamalai is located on Pudukkottai-Kodumbalur-Manapparai road about 20 Kilometers from Pudukkottai. Following the road off the main road one reaches the foothills of the hillock where the temple complex is situated. Town Bus facility is available from Pudukkottai.

Kumaramalai :

It is 10 kms from Pudukkottai. A top a small mount is a Murugan temple. The tank water of the mount is considered to be holy.

Kunnandarkovil :

The monument - cave temple Kunnandarkoil, referred to in inscriptions as Thiruk-kunrak-kudi, has a rock cut temple, which may be assigned to the time of Nandi-varman II Pallava-malla (710-775 AD). In the course of the centuries, it developed, with structural additions, into a big complex. In plan it is similar to the Gokarnesvara temple at Thirugokarnam. It is a fascinating monument to study. Its main artistic gifts are a hundred and one pillared ‘ratha’ mandapam, and two splendid portrait sculptures doing duty as dvara-palaka-s before the main shrine. The temple has some fine bronzes also.  

Narthamalai

Narathamalai

  1. This cave temple is also called Padhinen-bhumi Vinnagaram. ‘Padinen’ refers to the ‘eighteen regions’. Vinnagaram means temple for Vishnu.

  2. Perhaps, it was originally a Jaina cave in the 7th century AD, but converted into a Vishnu shrine in 12th or 13th century AD. The date of this conversion is still under debate.

  3. After this conversion it came to be called as Thirumer-koil or Merrali and Padhinen-bhumi Vinnagaram. Presently it looks like a Vaishanavite shrine.

  4. It consists of a rectangular garbha-griham and an ardha-mandapam in front, both excavated from the living rock. Presently the garbha-griham is empty, except for a broken stone pitham. This pitham is also carved out of the living rock.

  5. The ardha-mandapam has two massive pillars and two pilasters in the front, also carved out of the rock. It houses twelve identical but wonderful relief sculptures of Vishnu on the walls.

  6. The twelve figures perhaps represent those of the twelve common names of Vishnu - Kesava, Narayana, Madhava, Govinda, Trivikrama, Vamana, Achyuta, Sridhara, Padmanabha, Damodara, Vasudeva and Madhu-sudhana.

  7. In front of this cave temple is a stone plinth of the maha-mandapam. Judging from the remains, this mandapam must have been a closed one supported by square pillars, with walls ornamented with pilasters crowned with capitals.

  8. There are a number of loose sculptures broken parts sculptures kept on this plinth and also inside the ardha-mandapam. Those on the plinth include two dvara-palaka-s, a Sapta-matrika group and an Ayyanar. Those inside the ardha-mandapam include two Ganesa-s. All these sculptures are excavated in and around Narthamalai.

Madattukoil :

The deserted Siva Temple is a beautiful ruin. Known by the name Madattukoil the site contains remnants of an old (probably Chozha) outer Prakaram in dark Granite, enclosing a younger (most probably Vijayanagara) structure in pink gneiss. The architecture and sculptures exhibit consummate artistic skill and delicacy. Approach : Thirty-eight kilometres from Pudukkottai and close to Marudhampatti village. The deviation at Kolattur on Pudukkottai-Tiruchirappalli Highway leads to Pakkudi village via Madattukoil.

Malayadippatti :

In Malayadippatti, there are two cave temples hewn out of same rock, similar to that of Thirumayam. The bas-relief sculpture of Mahishasura-mardini in the Siva shrine is very impressive. The Sapta-matrika frieze here will interest iconographers. Practitioners of Kundalini yoga may also find it worth studying this group of sculpture for it is an authentic 1200-year old composition. There are paintings on the walls, ceiling and sculptures in the Vishnu shrine. Also there are some prehistoric burial sites near to Malayadippatti village. Approach : Malayadippatti is a small village in the northern half of the Pudukkottai district. In the early inscriptions the place was called Thiru-valattur-malai. It is 40 km away from Pudukkottai, in the Killukkottai–Kiranur route, 3 km away from Killukkottai and 20 km from Kiranur. One can reach this place by taking the diversion either from Adhanakkottai on the Thanjavur-Pudukkottai road or from Kiranur on the Tiruchirappalli-Pudukkottai National highway. Town Bus facility is available from Kiranur and Killukkottai.

Muchukundesvara Temple :

Situated to the north of Muvarkoil, this temple was built by Mahimalaya Irukkuvel in early tenth century A.D. The presiding deity is referred to as Tiru. Mudukunram Udaiyar in the inscription. The temple originally consisted of a garbhagriha (sanctum, 4.11m square) and an ardha-mandapa, all facing all east. The adhishthana has plain mouldings and has a bhutagana frieze below the cornic and a yali freize above it. The closed maha-mandapa and the Amman shrine are later additions. Only four of the original eight sub-shrines are found intact-one is empty and the other three are dedicated to Subramanya, Chandesvara and Bhairava.

Peraiyur :

Peraiyur, a palmyra-shaded fertile village contains a temple of great renown. The Naganatha-swami temple is well known for Naga worship, and barren women have been making pilgrimage to this village for centuries and install stone image of Naga-s. The stone images installed over the centuries now accumulated to give a breathtaking site. Peraiyur is on the south bank of the Vellaru. Hand-fans fashioned out of Palmyra fronds are an important product of this place. Men of the Isai-vellala or Melakarar community in the village make these hand-fans. Approach : Peraiyur is about 15 km from Pudukkottai, which is just three kilometers from the Pudukkottai-Kuzhipirai-Ponnamaravathi bus route. Regular bus services and taxi facility is available from Pudukkottai.

Sri Kokarneswarar Temple :

 The rock-cut cave Temple of Sri Kokarneswarar Brahadambal at Thirukokarnam is of Mahendraverma Pallava’s period. Ph : 04322-236195.

Thirumayam

Thirumayam :

19 kms. from Pudukkottai. The Fort, the Siva and Vishnu temples are the tourist attractions. The Fort played an important role in the history of Tondaiman rulers of Pudukkottai and the British. The erection of this 40 acre-wide Fort in 1687 A.D. is attributed to Sethupathi Vijaya Ragunatha Thevar, the Sethupathi of Ramanathapuram. On the hill there is a Rock Cut Siva temple with Music inscription and the relics of a Fort. At the foot of the hill Vishnu and Siva Shrines are found. The Vishnu temple is one of the most complete and the largest Anantasayi groups in India. It is a natural Cavern which has been changed into a shrine.


Sittannavasal

  1. Sittannavasal (‘sith-than-na-vaa-sal’) is the best-known archeological site in Pudukkottai. It is famous for its cave paintings, which are second only in importance after Ajanta paintings in the art history of India.

  2. It is perhaps the only place where you can find inscriptions in Tamil from the 3rd century BC to the 13th century AD. Also there are megalithic monuments such as stone-circles, urn and cists burials spread in the plains around the hill. Sittannavasal is a corruption of Sit-tan-na-va-yil, which means ‘the abode of great saints’.

  3. Approach : Sittannavasal is located on Pudukkottai-Annavasal-Viralimalai main road about 16 Kilometers from Pudukkottai. The village lies to the right of the road from Pudukkottai to Annavasal. An arch put up by the Government welcomes the visitors. On the main road before one takes a turn to enter Sittannavasal and on the roads leading to the monuments, there are remains of prehistoric burial sites.

  4. Most of the monuments of this place are in and around a hill, which runs along the north-south direction. The hill itself is not very tall, reaching to about 70 meters. Following this road off main road one reaches the foothills of the hillock at which the road takes a left turn. It is from here one starts the climb to the Jain caverns, called Ezhadippattam.

  5. The cavern contains a number of stone beds and inscriptions. Further traveling on the road would take you to the western slope of the central hillock. From here one makes a short climb of some steps to reach the Jain cave temple, and its world famous mural paintings. Town Bus and taxi services are available from Pudukkottai.

Thirukkattalai :

The Siva temple is a good specimen of early chozha architecture of the second half of the 9th century. This is a parivara complex type with sub-shrines around the main shrine. The inscriptions in the temple help to understand the history of the temple. Approach : Thirukkattalai is about 15 kilometers from Pudukkottai town. Taxi service and Town bus services is available from Pudukkottai.

ThirumayamFort

Thiruvarangulam :

A big temple, which has been expanded down the ages, dedicated to Hara-tirthesvara and Brahadambal. The main shrine dates back to 12th century. A Nataraja bronze of superlative quality from this temple is now on display at the National Museum, New Delhi. This temple of Hara-tirthesvara and is held in high veneration by devotees far and near. There are a number of inscriptions here. There are a few mythological stories associated with this temple.
Approach : Thiruvarangulam is about 15 kilometers from Pudukkottai, which is well connected with Pudukkottai, Alangudi, Pattukkottai, Peravurani and Karambakkudi by frequent bus services. Taxi facilities is available from Pudukkottai, Pattukkottai and Peravurani.

Thiruvengaivasal :

Thiruvengaivasal (‘Sacred place of gate of the Tiger’) is a well-known and ancient place of worship. Mythologically linked to Gokarnesvara temple of Thirugokarnam, the temple has both Chozha and Pandya styled structures. The sculptures of Gnana Dakshina-moorthi and Yoga Dakshina-moorthi are of iconographic interest. There are a number of important inscriptions here.
Approach : Thiruvengaivasal is about 10 kilometers from Pudukkottai town and 2 kilometers from Pudukkottai-Tiruchirappalli highway.

Vendanpatti :

40 kms. from Pudukkottai via Ponnamaravathi. The Nandi known as Nei Nandi in the Arulmighu Meenakshi Chokkeswarar Temple is very well known. Though made of black granite, it now shines like marble due to frequent abishekam with pure ghee. Another interesting feature is the absence of flies and ants inspite of the Nandi being showered with pure ghee every day. A large number of devotees flock daily to this temple.

VIRALIMALAI

Viralimalai

  1. According to the tradition, the temple owes its origin to Jnana Varodaya, who belonged to Vayalur, ten km west of Tiruchi.

  2. He induced a Perambur chief, Azhagiya-manavaalan, to build it. This was in the 15th century. In later times, other chiefs expanded the temple.

  3.  Arunagiri, the great saint who is believed to have lived in the middle of the 15th century, visited Viralimalai and sang in praise of the God here, expressing some of his mystic experiences.

  4. The deity presiding over this temple is offered by way of neyvedhya every evening at the day’s last puja, the most curious of objects: a country cigar (suruttu kalanji).

  5. The Temple Architecture: The ascent to the top of the hill is made by a series of flights commencing at an entrance close to the vahana-mandapam. To the north of the first landing, about half-way up, there is a natural cavern in which there is now a shrine containing a lingam, an Amman, Ganesa, etc.

  6. At the top is mandapam, from which one enters the main gopuram facing south. More steps lead to the northern prakaram.

  7. The idol of Sri Subrahmanya has six faces and twelve hands. The God is seated on a peacock, with the two Amman-s, Valli and Devasena, standing on either side.

  8.  The mandapam-s are of the Madurai style, and the one on the extreme east affords a panoramic view of the country round as far as the Tiruchirappalli rock. Some panels containing dancing figures in bas-relief, evidently belonging to a ruined early Chozha temple at Kodumbalur, have been built into the walls of the northern prakaram.

  9. The two lion-pillars in the vahana-mandapam at the foot of the hill are of the Pallava type, and probably belonged to the Ainthali or Aivar-koil at Kodumbalur.

Viralimalai :

The hill crowned with famous Subrahmanya Temple, which is a prominent landmark for miles, presents a great show of beautifully banded granite gneiss. There is a famous peacock sanctuary.

Approach : Viralimalai is situated at the Trichy-Madurai Highway and its about 25 km from Trichy. From Pudukkottai, Viralimalai is about 40 km and can be reached via Eluppuron Manapparai road.

Vishnu Temple in Thirumayam :

The Sathya-moorthi temple is a highly venerated shrine and is regarded by local Vaishnavites to be second in sanctity only to the temple at Srirangam. It is called Adhi-rangam (‘original-Rangam’) and is claimed to be older than the temple at Srirangam. Actually there are two Vishnu shrines. One is the cave temple and contains one of the most complete and the largest Anantha-sayi groups in India, conforming, almost to the detail, to agamic specifications of Anantha-sayi. The other is a structural temple in which Vishnu is worshipped in the form of Sathya-moorthi. The rock-cut shrine is a natural cavern modified and enlarged into a cave temple with the tall facade pillars inserted. It may be ascribed to a date not latter than the first half of the 8th century. The fact that the celebrated Vaishnava saint, Thiru-mangai-azhvar, sang hymns in praise of the deity at Thirumayam Vishnu temple has enhanced its sanctity.

ThirumayamSivaTemple

 

MUDUMAKKAL THAZHI

Size of the pot does matter...

In ancient civilization in parts of Tamilnadu... Dead people are kept in these kind of pots along with some food, garments and sealed and buried... In tamil its known as “MUDUMAKKAL THALZHI” In the recent past, Archalelogy team has found the remains these kind pots in various historical sites in Tamilnadu...

 
 


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