Monday, September 18, 2006

Weekend Darshan - 13


We had been to Somangalam this week end.

I had heard about a very old temple dedicated to Lord Shiva in this place. So we set out in search of it, early sunday morning. The historic information about this place can be found here.

We managed to find it. But what I saw there evoked mixed feelings in me. It is an absolute beauty of the Cholas. But time has weathered the temple and those generous hearts that could spare funds for renovating must have found it appealing to attach steel grilled doors, build concrete sheds and fix mosaic tiles to the floors.


Some original idols

Magnificent back side of the temple. Its oval

An artistic window. Testimony to Chola art

There's nothing much a lover of art and sculpture can do except grieve at what has been lost. Inspite of so much cement and concrete, the temple is impressive. The temple was locked. Somehow we didnt feel like going in after what we saw there.

A beautiful tree within the temple

Somangalam is 6 kms from Kishkinta. Proceed straight after Kishkinta, the road divides into two. Take the left there and proceed as the road goes. Go beyond Sairam Engineering College . Somangalam is just after Dhanalakshmi College of Engineering. There is also a road from Somangalam which leads to Kundrathur - Sriperumbudur road.


Blogger srivat said...

Wow..bala..the temple pic looks beautiful..
Is this also one of the navagraha sthalams around chennai - for Moon I think.
I heard there are a few old temples but in very bad condition in somangalam.did you get a chance to visit them too?

11:40 PM  
Blogger b a l a j i said...

yes... this is said to be moon sthalam n the net... didnt confirm it with anyone there...

and i didnt check out other temples there....

11:43 PM  
Blogger Indian Bluff said...


I am not much of a temple person, but, what struck me from the pics is the tree.

Looks very healthy and majestic !

Anyway, it would be a shame if that part of history is not properly preserved !

indian sarees

5:50 AM  
Blogger Karthigeyan said...


How did you confirm it as a beauty of Cholas when the link ( says it belongs to Pandyas of 13th Century?

Anyway thats a gr8 exploration from your side :)

2:30 PM  
Blogger b a l a j i said...

It can be identified by their distinct style in the pillars and the temple walls

6:04 PM  
Blogger b a l a j i said...

oops... the link was wrong...
pls... refer here

6:06 PM  
Blogger Lalita Mukherjea said...

The tree is indeed beautiful.

4:49 AM  
Blogger Narayanan Venkitu said...

Hmm..what can I say. It's a shame that we forget to preserve history.
People build temples for Khusboo and other actors and actresses ...but don't know, their own history and down even want to preserve it for the future.

Actually looking at things that are happening...looks like nobody is bothered to look beyond their generation.! Shame.


I've been to this temple in the early 80's to collect inscriptions. There is a cave connecting Somangalam and MaNimangalam ( Shivan temple) which was used by he kings to run / hide during war time.

Nice photos Balaji and wonderful links...Dr.Gift was my HOD in MCC ( 1978 thru 1983), Thanks to him I got interested in all this. He used to come with us to collect inscriptions which they'd the feed into the computers and Date them. Glorious days, Great Professor.! Long live his soul.

1:11 PM  
Blogger NIRMAL said...

i have always though u were a good connoisseur or rather gourmand
u seemed to be great traveller as well

-Nice post

11:06 PM  
Blogger b a l a j i said...

yes it is...

i remember abt the secret way u told me long back... and thats why i went there... but it was a turn off for me

now u know... :)

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is really very nice that u blogged all your visitings.

4:34 AM  
Anonymous Juji said...

Hi balaJI,

i think u r an excellent traveller who always loves temple visits. i m unlucky i m not ur friend. if i m ur friend, definitely i would have enjoyed all these places. I have u visited any temples which is meant for marriage. i know this tirumanancheri (near kumbakonam). importantly please let me know any temple u know which is meant for couples whose stars does not matches (means star porutham ellatha girl and guy wants to marry.). somebody told me that there is a temple in namakkal for this purpose. if you know of sure please let me know. because it will give life to my 2 friends since both d girl & guy is close friend of mine. thanks in advance.



10:18 PM  
Blogger b a l a j i said...


I dont know any such temple. Please google for it.

10:22 PM  
Anonymous Juji said...

Hi BalaJI,

if u came to know in future pls let me know.


10:49 PM  

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