Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Patteeswarar Temple, Perur – History

Patteeswarar Temple, Perur – History

This temple is believed to be built by Chola Emperor Karikala Chola in 1st Century AD. The temple finds mention in Devara hymns of Appar, Sundarar and Sambandar Nayanmars. Nayanmars were group of 63 saints living in Tamil Nadu during the 6th to 8th centuries CE. The temple also finds mention in Thirukovaiyar of Manickavasagar, 9th century Tamil poet who wrote famous Thiruvasagam and minister to the Pandya king Varaguna Varman II. Lord Murugan of this temple is praised in Thirupugazh Hymns of Arunagirinathar,  a 15th century CE Tamil saint poet.

The Ardha Mandapam and Maha Mandapam were constructed during the rule of Kongu Cholas from 11th to 13th Century CE. The temple received extensive patronage from Cholas, Pandyas, Cheras, Pallavas, Hoysalas, Vijayanagara Kingdoms, Wodeyars, Nayakkars, Kongu Cholas and Britishers. There are about 82 inscriptions available in this temple dating to their rule. The inscriptions talks about grants, gifts, donations, renovation activities, socio political conditions of ancient times, constructional activities and taxes levied.

Lord Shiva was called as Thiruvanpatteeswarar, Thiruvanpatti Udayar, Thiruvanpatti Aludayar and the temple was called as Idangai Nayakeeswarar Koyil, Perur Aludayar Idangai Nayaka Eswaramudaiyar and Thenkayilaya Mudaiyar in the inscriptions. The famous Kanaga Sabhai was built around the 17th century, by Azhagathiri Nayakkar of Madurai. Tippu Sultan of Mysore attached half of the Inams of the temple in the 18th century. Later on, the East India Company restored it to the temple.

The sanctum and mother shrine were renovated and a mandapam housing 63 Nayanmar saints is built in the mid of the 18th century. The Kalyana Mandapam and the front Mandapam were built and the tower was repaired in 20th century. Perur, was once a haven for the Pasupatha sect of Saivism. There were lot of mutts functioned in this place and the Santhalinga Swamigal mutt is functioning at present.

Perur dates back to megalithic period. During Sangam era, Perur was an important trade center when trade with romans flourished. Perur was located in the cross roads of Muzris and Arikamedu. A treasure trove of Roman coins were found in Perur. Perur Nadu and Vadaparisara Nadu  come under Aarai Nadu, which was one of the sub division of 24 Nadus of Kongu Mandalam.