400-year-old Naick-era stone inscription found near Theni

The stone slab was originally installed at Pandya Meenakashi Sundareswarar temple

September 14, 2022 12:56 pm | Updated 12:56 pm IST - Theni:

A 400-year-old Naick-era stone inscription discovered by a team of teaching faculty from a Madurai college at a temple near Rajadhani village in Andipatti Taluk.

A 400-year-old Naick-era stone inscription discovered by a team of teaching faculty from a Madurai college at a temple near Rajadhani village in Andipatti Taluk. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

A team of faculty from Mannar Thirumalai Naicker College in Madurai recently discovered a 400-year-old Naick-era stone inscription at a temple near Rajadhani village in Andipatti Taluk in Theni.

During a field visit, the team comprising Assistant Professors from the Department of History, R. Praiya and S. Rajagopal, along with social activist, S. Aswath, found the inscription, which is said to be 400 years old, in front of a Vinayagar temple in Rajadhani.

The stone slab, which had inscription on both sides, was originally installed at Pandya Meenakashi Sundareswarar temple in the vicinity. However, this temple, on Andipatti-Velapparkoil Road, is now in dilapidated condition. Unaware of its significance, the local committee had installed the three-foot-high stone inscription at the Vinayagar temple.

The inscriptions in Tamil could have been inscribed in the early quarter of the 17th century. It has a Vaishnava symbol, the sun, the moon and a lotus flower with blurred letters, the faculty said.

The inscriptions that were read with the help of retired Archaeologist, Dr. C. Santhalingam, talk about the Kandamanaickanur Palayakarar Veerakandama Naicker having received a donation from Muthu Veerappa Naick, the 6th ruler of the Madurai Naick kingdom in 1621-1622 AD.

The inscriptions revealed that the bounded lands of Kandamanayakanur, a patti for keeping cattle, was donated to Brahmins and temples. Stating that some stone sculptures were found scattered in the surrounding areas, the team said that further explorations could throw new light on Kandamanayakkanur local administration.

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