|STATES AND UNION TERRITORIES OF INDIA|
near Kumbakonam - Tribhuvanam
by Lalitha Venkat
Tamilnadu, South India, is about 8km from Kumbakonam and 45 km from Thanjavur.
The Kampahareswarar temple dedicated to Shiva was built by the Chola King
Tribhuvana Chakravarti as a memorial to his conquest in the North and is
ranked as one of the Chola masterpieces. It was also built by Kulattunga
III (1178 – 1216AD). The shrine resembles the Iravateswara temple at Darasuram,
especially the wheeled porch and is known for the rich beauty of its sculptures.
The front mandapam
here is built in the form of a huge chariot. The Vimanam here is larger
than that of Darasuram, and is about 120 feet in height. Sculptured panels
depicting scenes from the Ramayana adorn this temple. The image of Sarabha
is a rare sculpture with a strange combination of bird and man. Siva assumed
this form to subdue the fury of Narasimha.
There are rows
of musicians and dancing figures all around the base of the shrine as well
as at the base of the surrounding colonnades.
It is only
in the temples at Thanjavur, Tribuvanam, Darasuram and Gangaikondacholapuram
in Tamilnadu, that the Vimanam towers over the entrance Gopurams. After
these four temples, the Cholas went back to their traditional style of
building temples with larger gopurams and smaller central Vimanams. These
temples are fitting memorials to the glory of the rulers that built them,
as well as monuments of piety and a commitment to art and architecture.
is renowned for silk weaving.