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Marapachi Bommai (wooden dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

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

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

Marapachi Dolls, also known as Marapachi Bommais meaning wooden dolls, are traditional dolls made specifically of red sandalwood  or silk-cotton-wood or red wood which are displayed during the Golu festival in South India as part of Dassara or Navaratri celebrations.

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

These dolls made in pairs generally of male and female are dressed up by children as part of plaything and displayed during the Golu or “Bommai Kolu” festival. 

Tirupathi is one of the locations where it is specially ornamentally carved, and the dolls are stated to represent Venkateshwara and his consort. 

They are also made in Kondapalli as Raja-Rani (King and Queen) dolls which are a compulsory display during the Golu festival.

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

As a tradition Marapachi dolls are a hereditary gift from mother to daughter when the latter starts her Bommai Kolu arrangement. 

A particular practice followed in South India is to gift the Marapachi Dolls to newly married couple for their children to play with.

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

The significance of this particular gift made of Marapachi doll in red sandal wood is stated to be the medicinal quality of the wood. When a child licks this plaything made of red sandalwood, the child’s saliva derives an extract of the wood which the child absorbs into its system

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

During the Golu festival, which is held in South India, as part of Navratri festival.

This is particularly in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu, the Marapachi dolls are part of the display.

The displays are arranged in an odd number of tiers or steps of 3, 5, 7, 9, or 11, but generally in nine steps.

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

In the traditional arrangement, the top tier is assigned for the display of Marapachi Dolls. Other dolls, either made of clay or wood, are arranged in specified tiers.

On the first day of the Navratri, which is the day following New Moon Day, worship is offered by women of the house to the Goddesses ParvathiLakshmi and Saraswati.

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Marapachi Bommai ( Dolls ) of Andhra Pradesh

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“A country remains poor in wealth both materially and intellectually if it doesnot develop its handicrafts and its handicrafts & handloom industries. It lives a lazy parasitic life by importing all the manufactured articles from outside”.

~ Mahatma Gandhi


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 : https://in.linkedin.com/in/mala-chandrashekhar-04095917a

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