shivaheader.jpg (29087 bytes)

164. Tirunageswaram


Location: Tirunageswaram near Kumbhakonam.
(Chola Naadu -South of Kaveri)
Shiva: Nageswarar
Ambal: Kunramulainayaki, Girikuchambal
Theertham: Surya Pushkarini
Patikam : Sambandar, Appar, Sundarar
Travel Base: Thanjavur
Other: Navagraha Stalam
Description: This Shivastalam is a vast temple known for its shrine to Raahu, one of the nine celestial bodies - Navagrahas- hence a Navagrahastalam visited by thousands. (Rahu and Ketu are associated with the legend of the churning of the milky ocean.) 

Tirunageswaram is considered to be the 29th in the series of Tevara Stalams in the Chola kingdom located south of the river Kaveri. 

It is located adjacent to the Vaishnava Divya Desam Uppiliappan Kovil outside the town of Kumbhakonam. Sekkizhaar, the author of Periyapuranam, named the temple that he built at Kunrattur in Tondai Nadu after this temple.

Offering worship at Kudandai Keezhkottam (Nageswarar temple) in the morning, at Tirunageswaram at noon and at Tiruppampuram in the evening on a given day is considered to be of special significance.

Legend has it that the mythological serpents Aadi Seshan, Dakshan and Kaarkotakan worshipped Shiva here. Legend also has it that Nala worshipped Shiva here as in Tirunallaar.  Gowtama muni, Paraasarar and Bhageerata are also associated with legends related to this temple.

The Temple: This temple occupies an area of 15 acres and it has Vast prakarams, towering gopurams, and several mandapams. The fort like walls which surround the outermost prakaram are pierced with four entry towers. There are as many as 12 Theerthams here. There is an image of Sekkizhaar and a mandapam built by him, here as well.

This temple was built by Gandaraditya Chola son of Parantaka Chola I. The inner mandapams and the outer mandapams were built by Sekkizhaar and Govinda Deekshitar (minister of Achyutappa Nayakar).

There is a shrine to Raahu in one of the prakarams. The Piraiani Nudalaal Ambaal shrine is situated in the inner mandapam near the Naganathar shrine, while the Girikuchambika shrine is housed in a separate sanctum.

Festivals: The annual Bhramotsavam is observed in the month of Kartikai while the Sekkizhaar festival is celebrated in the month of Vaikasi.


WB01343_.gif (599 bytes)         WB01345_.gif (616 bytes)

[Abodes of Shiva - Home] [The Templenet Encyclopedia][Temple Architecture][Travel & Tourism] [[Festivals& Fairs]Beliefss & Legends]]
The Templenet Homepage