Chennai

Six stone idols unearthed at Thiruvalangadu

Stone idols unearthed at Thiruvalangadu temple in Tiruvallur district.Photo: Special Arrangement  

Six stone idols have been unearthed recently at the Vadaranyeswarar temple at Thiruvalangadu in Tiruvallur district. They were kept in the temple and the age of the idols was yet to be ascertained.

Temple officials said the idols were found whey they dug the precincts to construct an annadhana mandapam.

The idols of Vinayaga and Muruga are one-foot tall and the idols of Appar, Sundarar, and Sambandar are three feet in height. The sixth idol was not clearly identified.

“The idols may belong to 14{+t}{+h} or 15{+t}{+h} century. But only an archaeological study will throw light on the period,” said noted archaeologist Mr. Nagaswamy, while stressing the need for intimating the Archaeology department immediately after an idol was spotted.

He said even digging process should be done under the supervision of archaeologists as careless handling would not only damage the idols, but also would destroy the method of burial of idols.

“When idols, whether bronze or stone, are buried during war or invasion, the pit would be filled with river sand to protect them from climatic changes. The idols would be buried upside down and covered with a flat stone. A small stone would be placed on the top of the pit to identify them. A bundle of tharpai grass would be used to perform poojas for the stone,” he said.

The idols found in the temple, where Lord Siva performed the dance for Karaikal Ammaiyar, assume importance because it was here in 1904 a total of 32 copper plates issued by Rajendra Chola in 1018 AD were found.

Along with the copper plates, a copper box containing various items for performing poojas and beautiful bronze Nataraja idol were also found.

“The Nataraja idol was exhibited in London and is now kept in the Egmore museum. The copper plates talk about the king’s donation to the temple,” Mr. Nagaswamy said.



The idols may belong to 14{+t}{+h} or 15{+t}{+h} century, says archaeologist




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Printable version | Jun 11, 2021 8:28:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/six-stone-idols-unearthed-at-thiruvalangadu/article7657153.ece

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