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Issue No. 131

இதழ் 131
[ டிசம்பர் 2016 ]

இந்த இதழில்..
In this Issue..

சங்க இலக்கியங்களில் ஆடற்கலை 
தவத்துறைக் கோயில் விமான சிற்றுருவச் சிற்பங்கள்
அங்கும் இங்கும் - டிசம்பர் 2016
Issue No. 131 > English Section


Chandrasekaraswami Temple


Thiruchchendurai Karrali Mahadevar Temple

The Chandrasekaraswami temple or the Thiruchchendurai Karrali Mahadevar Temple consists of a vimana, a mukha mandapa, a maha mandapa and an open pillared mandapa. The vimana and the mukha mandapa are the earliest among them, constructed by the Princess Pudi Adichchapidari.


It is an Ashtanga vimana, a two tier pure nagara structure with an adhishthana, bhitti, prastara, griva, sikhara and stupi. The vimana is sectioned as karna-bhadra-karna divisions with slight projection of the bhadra on all sides whereas the karna sections are simply demarcated with pilaster arrangements.

At present the pratibandha adhishthana is partially inside the soil. Upana, padma jagati, rudra kumuda and yazhi series forms the components of adhishthana. The kumuda is ornamented with padma series on both sides. The yazhis in the prati series are excellent workmanship; paired facing each other with their mouth wide open revealing their sharp canines, orderly shown manes, and sharp clawed limbs are special to mention. Two of the yazhis in the series possess proboscis. The corners are adorned with makaras, a soldier is shown emerging from its mouth by wide opening. The prati series is followed by upari kampa.


Little inside the upari kampa raises the wall cantoned by brahmakantha pilasters. Both the karna and bhadra divisions possess a pair of pilaster each. Mala, sthana, padma kattu, kalasa, tadi, kumbha, pali, phalaka, virakantha forms the head components of the brahmakantha shaft. Every component carries intricate ornamentation. The sthana is decorated with leafy scrolls. Varieties are handled in the mala, flower festoons at some places and leafy scrolls in some places. Both the hangings are bordered with beads, besides, flower tipped beaded hangings are also shown in between. The mid region of padma kattu is also ornamented with beads.  The kalasa, kumbha and pali are embossed with leafy patterns. Such intricate ornamentation enhances the beauty of the structure.

The potikas above the pilasters are angular-taranga with kulavu, a specific feature of early architecture. The kulavu is shown in the starting point of the angular section followed by two tarangas and the base possesses three tarangas. Besides, the potikas also have median patta ornamented with scrolls. The potikas bear the uttira and above it are the vajana and valabhi. The potikas that are resting above the corner pilasters are three limbed.

The valabhi is adorned with bhuta series. The roof of the tala extend as flexed over hanging kapota which are rimmed at the edges. The kapota is ornamented with kudus at frequent intervals, central and corner pattas and chandra mandalas in the rims. Each segment is adorned with two kudus, in which the karna divisions have netra nasikas. A tuft of flows from the finial forms the arch of the kudus and the kudu is adorned with a circle. The tala ends with bhumi desa. As like the prati series, the yazhis in the bhumidesa are also paired, some are shown with tails. In the makaras, soldiers are shown emerging out of it, at some places ganas and simhas are also seen.

In the bhadra divisions, koshthas are seen in the middle on the west, north and south housing the deities Ammaiyappar, Durga, and Vrishabharudha respectively. Among the three sculptures Vrishabharudha belonged to the period of the vimana whereas the other two are modern origin.

The koshthas are flanked by brahmakantha split pilasters that carry the same features of the pilasters of the bhitti. The niches are crowned with makara thorana. The makara thoranas on the north and the south are with varied ornamentation, comparing the south the one on the north is well ornamented, however the thorana on the west remain incomplete.  


Above the bhumidesa the hara of the first tala is shown on the edges, appliqué from the harmaya of the second tala i.e., arpita hara. Karnakutas in the corners and bhadrasalas in the middle, in all the sides, forms the hara elements. The hara elements are interconnected by the harantara. In between the hara elements a pair of kshudra nasikas is shown on the harantara. Aslike, the hara elements possess alpa nasikas on its faces. The bhadrasalas in all the four sides are six anga salas. The entire stretch of hara has a vedika complex, while the karnakutas have griva, sikhara and stupi the bhadrasalas have a tala represented with vedika, bhitti, prastara and the super structures griva, sikhara, stupi. Thiruvedikkudi Vedapuriswarar temple, Paluvur Southern Temple, Kodumbalur Muvarkoil temples are other early examples of six anga salas in Chola region.

Both the alpa nasikas and the kshudra-nasikas have a projected rectangular shaft and the finial; the kudu arches. In the former, the kudus are formed on the face of the sikhara of the hara elements whereas for the latter on the roof of the harantara. The ornamental arch around the kudu is formed out of the flow from the mouth of the simhas and the kudu at most of the places remain plain but at some places adorned with circles or gandharva heads. All the nasikas are adorned with sculptures.  

The tala of the bhadra sala is cantoned by four plain brahmakantha pilasters and has a slight projection in the middle. The middle two pilasters flank the koshtha. Angular potikas resting on it are three limbed over the middle pilasters and four limbed in the corners. It bears the usual prastara elements. The tala ends with the bhumidesa. The kapota carries the usual ornamentation of pattas, kudus, chandra mandalas. The koshtha is adorned with sculptures.  

The sikharas of both the karna kutas and the bhadra salas are well ornamented. Valli mandalas in the corners, chandra mandalas in the ridges and padma pataka in the apex enrich the karna kutas. Aslike, beaded rows, scrolls, chandra mandalas and padma vari in the apex are the embellishments carried out to enhance the beauty of the bhadra salas. The side faces of the sala sikharas are ornamental as kudu arches with with kirti mukhas in the finial and gandharvas inside the kudu. The sikharas of the hara elements are crowned with the stupi, some of the stupis still remain the original stone stupis, which are also nagara in shape.


The harmaya of the second tala raise adjoining the hara of the first tala. The harmaya is cantoned by four brahmakantha pilasters on each side. The bhadra is demarcated by slight projection in the middle which is meager comparing the first tala. Besides, the middle two pilasters are veiled by the hara of the first tala.

Tadi, kudam, pali, phalaka and virakantha are the visible components of pilasters. The angular potikas that rests above the pilasters are two limbed in the middle and three limbed at the corners and bears the prastara above. The valabhi is adorned with bhuta frieze and as usual simhas in the corners. The kapota is rimmed at edges and ornamented with central and corner pattas, ridges with chandra mandalas, and also kudu arches. Two kudus are shown on each side, placed straight to the sputitas. Above the kapota is the bhumi desa represented with yazhi frieze. On the roof, at the four corners, nandi is shown seated.    

In the harmaya, the space in between the pilasters, on either side of the middle space is occupied with vritta sputita or square sputita, a feature find place in the early architectures. The former is seen only on the eastern side and the latter is seen on the other three sides. The vritta sputita carrying the features of a shrine is partially veiled behind the first tala hara. It is a rudra shaft carrying all the prastara elements viz., uttira, vajana, valabhi and kudu adorned kapota. The prastara is followed by the yazhi frieze denoting the end of the tala and above that the super structures griva and sikhara are seen. Vedika is prominently seen on the southern side sputita. The square sputita has a brahmakantha shaft with a square pada and the prastara. Uttira, vajana and valabhi forms the prastara elements which are shown on the valabhi of the harmaya. The square sputitas are adorned with either male or female fly whisk bearers.  

Above the bhumidesa, little inside, lies the vedika complex, above which rests the super structures; griva and sikhara. The griva has pilasters at four corners and also the uttira, vajana and maddalas forming the prastara. Koshtas are shown on all the cardinal directions, besides; the walls are adorned with dancers and musicians. The sikhara is ornamented with geometrical patterns throughout the body and a square padma pataka in the apex, valli mandalas on the corners, chandra mandala on the ridges. All these embellishments enhance the beauty of the sikhara.

The griva koshthas are flanked by brahmakantha split pilasters which has only the uppermost capital components, the angular potikas bear the usual prastara elements. The koshthas are surmounted with the kirti mukhas. Except the east the rest of the kirti mukhas are well ornamented carrying miniature ganas and yazhis on it. The kudu in the centre is adorned with a miniature shrine. The stupi has both stone and metal portion. The koshthas are adorned with deities related to the cardinal directions; Umasahita on the east, Vishnu on the west, Brahma on the north and Dakshinamurti on the south.



On the northern makara thorana, two pairs of makaras are seen; a pair on the bottom facing each other and a pair opposite each other on the top. An arch is formed between the makaras in the bottom and the makaras on the top. Scrolls forms the outer rim of the arch which are formed touching the snout of the makaras and inside the scroll arch, rampant simhas are shown, three on each side. Below this, festoon ornamentations are shown, in that beaded malas are shown hanging and in between the beaded malas, beaded strings tipped with flower is shown. Besides, inside the beaded mala yazhis are shown. All these ornamentations form a kudu in the middle which is adorned with a gana in dancing gesture. The gana is adorned with jatabhara, yajnopavita, kundalas and neck ornament. In the summit the space in between the makaras is adorned with a pendant. The plumage of the makaras in the floor is shown as ornamented scrolls. On the southern side, the thorana is embellished with heavy scrolls and the center is adorned with a medallion.

The Mukha mandapa

As like the vimana, the mukha mandapa has the same pratibandha adhishthana, pilaster cantoned bhitti and prastara, but the segmentation of karna-bhadra-karna found in the vimana is absent. The pilasters possess all the upper components and carry the same embellishment as found in vimana pilasters. The potikas are angular-taranga with kulavu and extend their limbs to bear the prastara. Bhutavari adorn the valabhi. The roof extension kapota as found in the vimana, rimmed in the edges and ornamented with chandra mandalas, kudus in the places corresponding to the pilasters and central and corner pattas. The kudus have ornamental arch with a finial and some of the kudus remain unfinished. It ends with the bhumidesa and the roof is plastered by tile and cement finishing.

The doorway of the mukha mandapa is flanked with brahmakantha split pilasters with same features and the doorway has ornamental doorframes; jambs, sill and lintel embellished with scrolls. The doorway is flanked by dvarapalas.


The mukha mandapa is a pillared hall measuring 1.77mts in the north south and 2.10 mts on the east-west directions. The mukha mandapa has two rows of pillars, each row has two pillars in the middle and two pilasters each one on the northern and southern side walls. The pillars are very unique in the sense that the combination of various types is found in a single pillar. The shaft is segmented as brahma, vishnu, indra and rudra i.e., four, eight, sixteen faced and finally plain cylinder. Besides, it also carries the usual capital components. Mala, sthana and padma kattu are in indrakantha sectioning. Kalasa, tadi, kudam, pali and virakantha are in rudrakantha sectioning.

Each facet of the indrakantha shaft is adorned with a scrolls and flower festoons alternatively and the corners have beaded hangings tipped with flower. Each facet of the stana is adorned with miniature of human figures or scrolls alternatively. The miniatures are in adoration or in anjali hasta. The padma kattu with upper and lower padma vari and the central rib adorned with beads. The rudrakantha sectioning carries embossed ornamentation.

The potikas that rests above the pillars carry the same feature of the pilasters of vimana and mukha mandapa and the ends flatly while reaching the uttira. The square frame also continues on the side faces of the potikas. The roof of the mukha mandapa is sectioned as three divisions by the pillars and covered with stone slabs.


The mukha mandapa leads to the sanctum. The sanctum has an ornamental doorway flanked by brahmakantha split pilasters and doorframes carry simple ornamentation with edges shaved as blunt. The split pilasters are brahmakantha shaft possessing all capital components with minute ornamentation. While the southern pilaster has flower festoon in the mala, the northern pilaster has scroll ornamentation. It is interesting to see miniature ganas in the sthana of both the pilasters. The frames of the pilasters on both the sides are ornamented with scrolls ornamentation and every fold of the frame is decked with flower.

The sanctum is cubical chamber measuring 2.15 mts in the east-west and 2.17 mts in north-south directions. The walls are plain but have the prastara elements of uttira, vajana, valabhi. The hollow roof is at present covered with wooden planks.

The sanctum houses Lord Siva in the form of Linga in the middle. The Linga is on a square platform, it has a vesara avudaiyar ornamented as urthuva and adhava padma, the bana is rudra. A lengthy gomukha is found on the north.


இப்படைப்பு குறித்த தங்கள் கருத்துக்கள் வரவேற்கப்படுகின்றன. கீழுள்ள படிவத்தில் தமிழிலோ ஆங்கிலத்திலோ பின்னூட்டமிடலாம். தமிழில் பின்னூட்டமிட ஏதேனும் ஒரு தமிழ்ச் செயலி பின்னணி செயல்பாட்டில் இருக்க வேண்டும்.
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