This Shiva shrine is a trove of information

Published: 28th September 2016 04:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th September 2016 10:21 PM   |  A+A-

One among the many Chola temples in and around Chennai is in Tirusulam, opposite the airport in Meenambakkam and close to Pallavaram. This  Shiva temple, located in the middle of four hills, is dedicated to Trisulanathar.

The inscriptions here clearly reveal that this temple was constructed during the Chola era, possibly in the reign of Kulottunga Chola I (1070-1125 AD). A distinguishing Chola feature is the shape of the main sanctum which is apsidal in form, the technical term of which is ‘gaja-prishta’ in Sanskrit, which means ‘back of an elephant’ as it is thus shaped.

This Shiva shrine.jpgThe shrine of Goddess Tripurasundari and the other structures in the temple are of later eras. While the main sanctum faces east, the one for the Goddess faces south. The niches or devakosthtas on the outer walls of the main shrine have superb images of Ganesha, Dakshinamurthi, Lingodhbhava, Brahma and Durga. The temple does not have a gopuram entrance and has only a small entranceway built of brick. It has also been called as the Dharmapurishwarar temple. The inscriptions on the walls are a treasure trove of information. Altogether there are 14 epigraphs, of which 13 belong to the Chola epoch and one to Pandyan times. These epigraphs mention that the ancient name of Pallavaram was Pallapuram. It was also known as Vanavan Mahadevi Chaturvedimangalam, indicating that it was named after a Chola queen and was a place

inhabited by people learned in the Vedas.  Many festivals are celebrated in this temple even today, the most important being Maha Shivaratri and Pradosham.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp