Hindu Spirituality Hindu Temples of India Temples & Temple Architecture Temples of TamilNadu

Brihadeeshvara Temple, Gangaikonda Cholapuram in Tamilnadu India

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ॐ श्री गुरुभ्यो नमः ॐ श्री शिवानन्दाय नमः ॐ श्री चिदानन्दाय नमः ॐ श्री दुर्गायै नमः 

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Brihadisvara Temple at Gangaikonda Cholapuram is a Hindu temple dedicated to Hindu God Shiva, in Gangaikonda Cholapuram, Jayankondam, in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. 

Completed in 1035 AD by the great Chola emperor Rajendra Chola I as a part of his new capital, this Chola dynasty era temple is similar in design, and has a similar name, as the older 11th century, Brihadeeswarar Temple in Thanjavur.

The Gangaikonda Cholapuram Temple is smaller yet more refined than the Thanjavur Temple. Both are among the largest Shiva temples in South India and examples of Dravidian style temple architecture.

The main temple dedicated to Shiva is based on a square plan, but it reverentially displays other Hindu deities such as Vishnu, Durga, Surya, Harihara, Ardhanarishvara, and many others.

The temple is renowned for its bronze sculptures, artwork on its walls, the depiction of the sacred bull Nandi and the scale of its tower. The old city of Gangaikonda Cholapuram was the capital of the most powerful Chola empire from around 900 AD to 1215 AD.    

The Gangaikonda Cholapuram temple remains an active temple even today. Four daily rituals, and many yearly festivals are held there. It is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Tamil Nadu.  

The Archaeological Survey of India administers the temple as a protected heritage monument. UNESCO declared the temple as a World Heritage Site in 2004, along with the Brihadeeswarar Temple at Thanjavur and Airavatesvara temple at Darasuram. These three temples are referred to collectively as the Great Living Chola Temples.

Gangaikonda Cholapuram Temple is built in Dravidian style of architecture with a square plan. The structural elements resemble the big Brihadisvara Temple in Thanjavur.

Spread India's Glorious Cultural & Spiritual Heritage

By Mala Chandrashekhar

Though academically trained in modern Western Sciences, Blogger Mala Chandrashekhar is a crazy maniac of India's ageless, timeless ethnic arts, crafts & textiles. The rich & glorious cultural & spiritual heritage of India is a subject extremely dear to her heart, and the whole of this Blog has been dedicated to spreading the immortal glories of ancient India worldwide, to every nook & corner of the globe, through these simple Blog-posts. Any constructive criticisms & suggestions in this regard for improvement of the Blog 'MOST WELCOME'. Also, High-Quality Guest Blog-posts 'MOST WELCOME". LinkedIn Profile :