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Books > Hindu > Temple Inscriptions of The Cuddapah District A Cultural Study
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Temple Inscriptions of The Cuddapah District A Cultural Study
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Preface

 

As a student of Indian Culture during my study of MA I had the opportunity to learn about the significant contribution of temples to the Indian Culture. This helped me to develop interest in study of the temples of Andhra Pradesh, in general and the inscriptions found in those temples in particular. At that time I saw the book entitled "Andhra Pradesh Devalaya Sasana Samiksha" in Telugu written by S.S. Ramachandra Murthy. This work studies different aspects of the inscriptions coming from select temples in Andhra. This inspired me to study the temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah district in detail. The results of my study are placed before scholars. I humbly submit that this is only an attempt to understand the significance of the temple inscriptions.

 

I am much beholden to Dr. S.S. Ramachandra Murthy, Former Professor of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology for his constant guidance and encouragement in my study. I also extend my heartful thanks to Prof. V. Venkataramana Reddy, Director of Oriental Research Institute, who has been almost every day enquiring about the progress of my work and encouraging me to complete the same as early as possible. I also take this opportunity to place my sincere thanks on record to my esteemed teacher Prof. Kiran Kranth Choudary for his encouragement and best wishes.1 also thank Dr. E. Chandramouli, Dr.T.S.R. Narayanan, Dr. M. Prabhakara Rao and other colleagues of Oriental Research Institute for their encouragement.

 

I fail in my duty if I do not express my gratitude to Dr. N. Krishna Reddy and Dr. P. Bhaskar Reddy, Associate Professors of the Dept. of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology for their valuable suggestions and help extended to me at various stages of my work.

 

I also thank my wife Smt. T. Usha Rani who inspite of her busy schedule at home and office, helped me greatly in completing this work in a short time.

 

I also thank Sri D.V.L. Narasimhan, for typing the book neatly in record time.

 

Foreword

 

It gives me immense pleasure to go through the book entitled "Temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah District (Andhra Pradesh) :A Cultural Study" by Dr. T. Surendra Reddy. Of late the study of inscriptions, particularly their contribution to Indian culture, has been receiving due attention. Inscriptions found in temples are a class by themselves as they shed welcome light on various aspects such as the foundation of temple, details of worship offered to the deities, festivals and rituals conducted, endowments made, structural additions made to the temple, popular participation in various ways and so on and so forth.

 

It is against this back drop that the work of Dr. T. Surendra Reddy deserves appreciation. He has made an indepth study of inscriptions found in different temples situated in the Cuddapah district. I congratulate him for his exhaustive study. He has analysed the data carefully and presented acceptable conclusions. Particular mention should be made about the useful glossary appended to the work.

 

I wish he continues his work with all seriousness, as he has so far done, and study the temple inscriptions of the other districts of Andhra Pradesh also.

 

Introduction

 

It is well known that inscriptions are the most important and reliable source for the study of political, social and cultural history of India. Although in the early stages of the epigraphical studies more emphasis was laid on the reconstruction of political history particularly from the second half of the last century due attention is being paid for understanding the social and cultural history basing on inscriptions. As far as Andhra Pradesh is concerned scholars like Kambhampati Satyanarayanamurthy, Khandavalli Lakshmiranjanam, Suravaram Pratapa Reddy, Nagolu Krishna Reddy, have studied the social and cultural history of Andhra in detail. Among the inscriptions, temple inscriptions throw welcome light on the history of temples. It is from these inscriptions that we learn about the period of the construction of the temple, endowments made to them, festivals and rituals celebrated, temple administration and so on and so forth. Needless to say that this type of information cannot be obtained from any other sources. In fact contribution of epigraphs to the study of various aspects of temple including art and architecture is of immense value. About two decades back the American Institute of Indian Studies, Varanasi held an international seminar on contribution of Indian epigraphy to art and architecture and the papers presented in that seminar have been published. S.S. Ramachandramurthy presented a paper on the contribution of Andhra epigraphy to art and architecture. In a way this can be said to be the beginning of exploiting the epigraphical data for the study of the temples of Andhra Pradesh. Later on in 1984 he published a book in Telugu entitled "Andhra Pradesh Devalaya Sasana Samiksha", This is followed by the publication of Contribution of Andhra Epigraphy to Temple Architecture by A.K.V.S. Reddy (Delhi 1997). To this can be added the Simhachalam Temple: A Cultural Study (1995) by P. Bhaskar Reddy and Temple Inscriptions of Srikakulam District: A Cultural Study (unpublished Ph.D Thesis submitted to the Sri Venkateswara University in 1998) by G. Sudhakar Naidu.

 

All the above works dealt with different aspects of temples taking the inscription as the main source material. A study of these works reveal the necessity of taking up this kind of study taking district as a unit. It is against this backdrop that it is proposed here to study the temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah district. For this purpose more than two hundred inscriptions coming from different temples, both Saivite and Vaishnavite, have been taken up. A majority of these inscriptions are in Telugu while some are in Sanskrit, Kannada and Tamil languages also. Particularly the inscriptions of the temple of Saumyanathadeva at Nandaluru, which belong to the Cholas and Pandyas are in Tamil language. All these inscriptions shed welcome light on different aspects of temple like the construction of the temple, structural additions made to them and reconstruction during different periods, temple administration, festivals, rituals conducted, endowments made for maintaining various services, etc.

 

More than sixty villages yielded more than two hundred temple inscriptions. The villages are arranged in alphabetical order and the temple inscriptions discovered in each of these villages are arranged in chronological order. A detailed summary of each of the inscriptions is given. Apart from this, the noteworthy feature of the epigraphs is also discussed. Here it may be noted that in some instances the names of the temples have changed in course of time. In such cases the history of the present day temple, though known by a different name, could be traced on the strength of the epigraphical evidence. Attention has been drawn to this while discussing the inscriptions of the temples concerned. Temples like those of Saumyanatha at Nandaluru, Kodandaramasvami at Vontimitta, Bhairavesvara at Mopuru, Virabhadrasvami at Rayachoti,Venkatesvarasvami at Devuni Cuddapah, Agastyesvara at Chilamakuru, Siddhavatesvara at Siddhavatam, Nagesvaradeva at Pushpagiri, Chennakesva- svami at Valluru, Sangamesvara at Animela, Ranganatha- svami at Gandikota, Jotinatha at Joti, Hariharanatha at Palugurallapalle. Parasuramesvara at Attirala, Venugopala- svami at Bollavaram are among the major temples of the Cuddapah district. It may be noted that the Saiva temples outnumber the Vaishnava temples.

 

As is well known land, villages, money, income from various taxes and cattle were the main objects of endowments to temples. Whenever money was granted the endowed amount was deposited and the interest accrued on it was utilised for the maintenance of the desired service. The donors included not only kings, nobles, chiefs, royal officials, merchants and wealthy class but also common people including Dommaris, Vipravinodins and Viramushtis. It is interesting to note that the people of last three classes figure as donors to temples during the Vijayanagara period only. Various festivals like Dasami-tirunallu. Dvadasi-tirunallu, Teppa-tirunallu, Utla-tirunallu, Rathotsava, Chaitra festival, etc., were conducted.

 

Contents

 

 

Preface

Foreword

1.

Introduction

2.

Study of Inscriptions

5

3.

Conclusions

103

Appendix

120

Glossary

125

Bibliography

131

 

Sample Page


Temple Inscriptions of The Cuddapah District A Cultural Study

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2005
Language:
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Preface

 

As a student of Indian Culture during my study of MA I had the opportunity to learn about the significant contribution of temples to the Indian Culture. This helped me to develop interest in study of the temples of Andhra Pradesh, in general and the inscriptions found in those temples in particular. At that time I saw the book entitled "Andhra Pradesh Devalaya Sasana Samiksha" in Telugu written by S.S. Ramachandra Murthy. This work studies different aspects of the inscriptions coming from select temples in Andhra. This inspired me to study the temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah district in detail. The results of my study are placed before scholars. I humbly submit that this is only an attempt to understand the significance of the temple inscriptions.

 

I am much beholden to Dr. S.S. Ramachandra Murthy, Former Professor of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology for his constant guidance and encouragement in my study. I also extend my heartful thanks to Prof. V. Venkataramana Reddy, Director of Oriental Research Institute, who has been almost every day enquiring about the progress of my work and encouraging me to complete the same as early as possible. I also take this opportunity to place my sincere thanks on record to my esteemed teacher Prof. Kiran Kranth Choudary for his encouragement and best wishes.1 also thank Dr. E. Chandramouli, Dr.T.S.R. Narayanan, Dr. M. Prabhakara Rao and other colleagues of Oriental Research Institute for their encouragement.

 

I fail in my duty if I do not express my gratitude to Dr. N. Krishna Reddy and Dr. P. Bhaskar Reddy, Associate Professors of the Dept. of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology for their valuable suggestions and help extended to me at various stages of my work.

 

I also thank my wife Smt. T. Usha Rani who inspite of her busy schedule at home and office, helped me greatly in completing this work in a short time.

 

I also thank Sri D.V.L. Narasimhan, for typing the book neatly in record time.

 

Foreword

 

It gives me immense pleasure to go through the book entitled "Temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah District (Andhra Pradesh) :A Cultural Study" by Dr. T. Surendra Reddy. Of late the study of inscriptions, particularly their contribution to Indian culture, has been receiving due attention. Inscriptions found in temples are a class by themselves as they shed welcome light on various aspects such as the foundation of temple, details of worship offered to the deities, festivals and rituals conducted, endowments made, structural additions made to the temple, popular participation in various ways and so on and so forth.

 

It is against this back drop that the work of Dr. T. Surendra Reddy deserves appreciation. He has made an indepth study of inscriptions found in different temples situated in the Cuddapah district. I congratulate him for his exhaustive study. He has analysed the data carefully and presented acceptable conclusions. Particular mention should be made about the useful glossary appended to the work.

 

I wish he continues his work with all seriousness, as he has so far done, and study the temple inscriptions of the other districts of Andhra Pradesh also.

 

Introduction

 

It is well known that inscriptions are the most important and reliable source for the study of political, social and cultural history of India. Although in the early stages of the epigraphical studies more emphasis was laid on the reconstruction of political history particularly from the second half of the last century due attention is being paid for understanding the social and cultural history basing on inscriptions. As far as Andhra Pradesh is concerned scholars like Kambhampati Satyanarayanamurthy, Khandavalli Lakshmiranjanam, Suravaram Pratapa Reddy, Nagolu Krishna Reddy, have studied the social and cultural history of Andhra in detail. Among the inscriptions, temple inscriptions throw welcome light on the history of temples. It is from these inscriptions that we learn about the period of the construction of the temple, endowments made to them, festivals and rituals celebrated, temple administration and so on and so forth. Needless to say that this type of information cannot be obtained from any other sources. In fact contribution of epigraphs to the study of various aspects of temple including art and architecture is of immense value. About two decades back the American Institute of Indian Studies, Varanasi held an international seminar on contribution of Indian epigraphy to art and architecture and the papers presented in that seminar have been published. S.S. Ramachandramurthy presented a paper on the contribution of Andhra epigraphy to art and architecture. In a way this can be said to be the beginning of exploiting the epigraphical data for the study of the temples of Andhra Pradesh. Later on in 1984 he published a book in Telugu entitled "Andhra Pradesh Devalaya Sasana Samiksha", This is followed by the publication of Contribution of Andhra Epigraphy to Temple Architecture by A.K.V.S. Reddy (Delhi 1997). To this can be added the Simhachalam Temple: A Cultural Study (1995) by P. Bhaskar Reddy and Temple Inscriptions of Srikakulam District: A Cultural Study (unpublished Ph.D Thesis submitted to the Sri Venkateswara University in 1998) by G. Sudhakar Naidu.

 

All the above works dealt with different aspects of temples taking the inscription as the main source material. A study of these works reveal the necessity of taking up this kind of study taking district as a unit. It is against this backdrop that it is proposed here to study the temple inscriptions of the Cuddapah district. For this purpose more than two hundred inscriptions coming from different temples, both Saivite and Vaishnavite, have been taken up. A majority of these inscriptions are in Telugu while some are in Sanskrit, Kannada and Tamil languages also. Particularly the inscriptions of the temple of Saumyanathadeva at Nandaluru, which belong to the Cholas and Pandyas are in Tamil language. All these inscriptions shed welcome light on different aspects of temple like the construction of the temple, structural additions made to them and reconstruction during different periods, temple administration, festivals, rituals conducted, endowments made for maintaining various services, etc.

 

More than sixty villages yielded more than two hundred temple inscriptions. The villages are arranged in alphabetical order and the temple inscriptions discovered in each of these villages are arranged in chronological order. A detailed summary of each of the inscriptions is given. Apart from this, the noteworthy feature of the epigraphs is also discussed. Here it may be noted that in some instances the names of the temples have changed in course of time. In such cases the history of the present day temple, though known by a different name, could be traced on the strength of the epigraphical evidence. Attention has been drawn to this while discussing the inscriptions of the temples concerned. Temples like those of Saumyanatha at Nandaluru, Kodandaramasvami at Vontimitta, Bhairavesvara at Mopuru, Virabhadrasvami at Rayachoti,Venkatesvarasvami at Devuni Cuddapah, Agastyesvara at Chilamakuru, Siddhavatesvara at Siddhavatam, Nagesvaradeva at Pushpagiri, Chennakesva- svami at Valluru, Sangamesvara at Animela, Ranganatha- svami at Gandikota, Jotinatha at Joti, Hariharanatha at Palugurallapalle. Parasuramesvara at Attirala, Venugopala- svami at Bollavaram are among the major temples of the Cuddapah district. It may be noted that the Saiva temples outnumber the Vaishnava temples.

 

As is well known land, villages, money, income from various taxes and cattle were the main objects of endowments to temples. Whenever money was granted the endowed amount was deposited and the interest accrued on it was utilised for the maintenance of the desired service. The donors included not only kings, nobles, chiefs, royal officials, merchants and wealthy class but also common people including Dommaris, Vipravinodins and Viramushtis. It is interesting to note that the people of last three classes figure as donors to temples during the Vijayanagara period only. Various festivals like Dasami-tirunallu. Dvadasi-tirunallu, Teppa-tirunallu, Utla-tirunallu, Rathotsava, Chaitra festival, etc., were conducted.

 

Contents

 

 

Preface

Foreword

1.

Introduction

2.

Study of Inscriptions

5

3.

Conclusions

103

Appendix

120

Glossary

125

Bibliography

131

 

Sample Page


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