Later Chola Temples

by S. R. Balasubrahmanyam | 1979 | 143,852 words

This volume of Chola Temples covers Kulottunga I to Rajendra III in the timeframe A.D. 1070-1280. The Cholas of Southern India left a remarkable stamp in the history of Indian architecture and sculpture. Besides that, the Chola dynasty was a successful ruling dynasty even conquering overseas regions....

Temples in Kannanur Koppam

About 16 km. north of Tiruchirapalli lies Samayavaram, the centre of a celebrated Sakti cult; a little to its north is the temple called Posalisvaram (or Hoysalisvaram, ‘Posala’ being the Tamil rendering of ‘Hoysala’) in the inscriptions, the name current being a corruption thereof, namely, Bhogesvaram.

Posalisvaram (Hoysalisvaram, Bhogesvaram) Udaiyar temple

In the 25th year of Hoysala Vira Somesvara, this temple was built of granite stone by the Hoysala ruler in truly Chola style in the new southern Hoysala capital called Kannanur Koppam, in the Chola country. By a strange irony of fate, it is again here that the Hoysalas were overthrown by the Pandyas.

On plan the temple consists of the (8.15 metres square), the ardhamandapa (5 metres long) and the mukhamandapa (11.20 metres square), all resting on a common adhishthana. There is a manimandapa in front with flights of steps in the flanks. The vimana is two-tiered and the sikhara is round. There are deva-koshtas but now there are no sculptures in them. The simplicity, immensity and majesty of the building are admirable. Over the cornice of the garbhagriha, there is a row of birds. The Devi shrine, close to the mukhamandapa, is perhaps a later structure.

The Posalisvaram is a Hoysala monument built in the Chola country with all the characteristics of the Chola style, and is a striking relic of a great dynasty that ruled in South India for more than three centuries.

In the 25th year of Vira Somesvara is a record from the north wall of the third prakara of the Jambukesvarasvamin temple at Jambukesvaram, which mentions that he consecrated a temple at Kannanur for the merit of his mother Kalaladeviyar, called Posalisvaram Udaiyar temple, and made a grant of the paddy derived from the villages of Narasingamangalam, Kannanur, Ottanur, Sengavur and others in Rajaraja valanadu (‘on the northern bank’). We learn from this record that the river Kaveri had breached its banks and had caused extensive damage to some lands and that these lands were reclaimed during that year (ARE 18 of 1891; also ARE 122 and 123ofl936-37).

Some of these temples and shrines are referred to in another inscription from Jambukesvaram belonging to the reign of Vira Somesvara, beginning with the introduction Samasta-bhuvanasraya. It remits taxes from the third year of the king on 32 of devadana land belonging to the temple (of Jambukesvaranj) and to the shrines of Viracholisvaram, Padumalisvaram, Vira-Narasingisvaram and I Somalisvaram in Vada Tiruvanaikka; these lands were subsequently converted into tirunamattukkani land for the consideration of a payment of 1,10,000 kasus (ARE 119 of 1936-37). (Pis. 388-90).

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: