Rock-cut Siva temple

Rock-cut Siva temple

The cave-temple dedicated to Siva seems to be a Pandyan excavation in the 7th-8th century AD. The cave-temple has a sanctum with a lingam cut out of the parent rock opening sideways into the ardha-mandapa. The ardha-mandapa has the pillar with square top and bottom portion with intervening octagonal shaft. There are bas-reliefs of Lingodhbhava opposite the sanctum and a Ganesa in the ardha-mandapa. A figure of nandi was also carved out of the parent rock in the ardha-mandapa. There is pair of dvarapalas guarding the entrance of the sanctum.

The most significant feature of the monument is the occurrence of traces of an inscription on music like the one preserved in full at Kudumiyanmalai. Unfortunately, this inscription was obliterated in the 13th century. The space was used for engraving an inscription recording the award of the tribunal by Hoysala general Appanna in the feud between the trustees of this temple and the adjacent Vishnu temple. Nevertheless, some of the letters in the Grantham script giving the svaras (notes) and the (colophon parivadhinida (parvadhini, a stringed instrument) and the name Gunasena in contemporary Tamil characters are still discernable. There are few other inscriptions of later periods in this temple. There are number of other structures built around this cave-temple in the subsequent periods.


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