Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Kolavilli Ramar||Ambal / Thayar:||Maragadavalli|
|Deity:||Perumal||Historical name:||Bhargava Kshetra|
|Vriksham:||Sevvazhai||Teertham:||Sukra, Parasurama, Balarama, Indra Teerthams|
|Timing:||8 to 12 & 5 to 7||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Divya Desam||–|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Tiruvelliyangudi||District:||Thanjavur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Kumbakonam (16 km)||Mayiladuthurai (26 km)|
|Thiruvarur (46 km)||Ariyalur (51 km)|
Tiruvelliangudi is located about 16km from Kumbakonam, just off the road to Tirupanandal.
Sthala puranam and temple information
We know the story of Mahabali and Vamana Avataram where Sukracharya, in the form of an insect, attempted to block the kamandalam so that Mahabali could not pour out water, and Vishnu (as Vamana) cleared the block with a straw, blinding Sukracharya. To regain his eyesight, Sukracharya worshipped at various Perumal temples, and pleased with his devotion Vishnu gave him pratyaksham here and promised to stay here forever. This is one of the Vaishnava Navagraha sthalams, dedicated to Sukran, which also gives the place its name Vellian-gudi (residence of Velli or Sukran).
Mayan, the chief architect of the asuras, wanted to construct a temple for Vishnu which would be even better than Vaikuntam. But after visiting this place, he realized that it would be impossible to do so. At Brahma’s suggestion, Mayan prayed to Vishnu, who appeared to him here, but Mayan wanted to see Him as He would appear in the Rama Avataram (which had not taken place yet, at the time). The Lord granted this request, and appeared with a bow and arrows. In the process, he handed off his discus and conch to Garuda. So at this temple, Perumal is worshipped in the form of Rama as well as in Vishnu in Bhujanga Sayanam. And Garuda is depicted with four hands instead of two – the extra hands holding Vishnu’s conch and discuss. It is regarded that worshipping at this temple is equivalent to worshipping at all 108 Divya Desams.
In another variant of the above legend, Mayan and Vishwakarma had an argument as to who was the better architect. They consulted Brahma, who said that Vishwakarma was better, as he had built Vaikuntam. Brahma also added that for Mayan to get equal status, he (Mayan) would have to build a temple for Vishnu that would surpass the beauty of Vaikuntam, on the banks of the river Kaveri. Mayan identified this place, where sage Markandeyar was in penance, and built the temple that stands till today.
It is regarded that this temple has existed in all four yugams – as Brahmapuram in Satya yugam, Parasaram in Treta yugam (as sage Parasarar had worshipped here), Sainthiranagaram in Dwapara yugam and Bhargavapuram in Kali yugam.
There is an eternal lamp in the garbhagriham called the netradeepam.
This is a medieval Chola temple, with subsequent additions and renovations by the Vijayanagara dynasty.
Other information for your visit
Senganur, which is located close by (2 km), is important to Saivites and Vaishnavites alike – it is the avatara sthalam of Vaishnavite guru and scholar Periyavachan Pillai, and Chandesa Nayanar, one of the 63 Saiva Nayanmars. It is also the birthplace of Sri Krishna Premi, whose ancestor was Periyavachan Pillai.
Ramamurthy Bhattar: 0435 2943152, 94433 96212, 93457 94354
Temple video (walk around) and narration in Tamil, by Sriram of templepages.com: