The Tamil Nadu Department of Archaeology is set to take up restoration of the 1,000-year-old Naganathaswamy Temple at Manambadi in Thanjavur district
About Naganathaswamy Temple:
- It was built by Rajendra Chola I (1012-1044 CE).
- It is referred as Kailasamudaiyar temple in inscriptions.
- It is known for its exquisite stone sculptures and important inscriptions.
- It consists of an ekatala vimana and a mukha mandapa.
- The walls of both structures are divided into three bays.
- The central bays of the vimana have niches to accommodate Dakshinamurthi in the south, Lingodhbava in the west and Brahma in the north.
- The mukha mandapa is provided with three niches on the south and the north.
- Excellent sculptures of Bikshatana, Adavallan and Ganapathi decorate the south, whereas Gangadarara, Durga and Ammaiappar are in the north.
- All the niches have well carved and distinctive makara thoranas (ceremonial arches) with relief sculptures in the centre.
- Inscriptions: The temple is known for its important inscriptions belonging to the periods of Rajendra Chola I and Kulothunga I (regnal years 1070-1120 CE).
- Nine interesting and informative inscriptions have been recorded from this temple.
- The earliest among them belongs to the fourth regnal year of Rajendra Chola I.
- It refers to a grant of land free of taxes by the nagaratthar of Ilaichikkudi for raising a flower garden named after the king for the use of the temple.
Q1) What is Inscription?
Inscriptions refer to writings or engravings on a surface, typically on durable materials like stone, metal, wood, or clay. These inscriptions can take various forms and serve different purposes. Throughout history, inscriptions have been used for communication, documentation, commemoration, and artistic expression.