Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Sundareswarar||Ambal / Thayar:||Meenakshi|
|Timing:||6 to 12 & 4 to 8||Parikaram:|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Chattiram Karuppur||District:||Thanjavur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Kumbakonam (3 km)||Mayiladuthurai (36 km)|
|Tiruvarur (42 km)||Thanjavur (44 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
Chattiram Karuppur is located 5 km northeast of Kumbakonam. In ancient times, this whole region was a forest of pathiri trees (see sthala puranam of Koranattu Karuppur Sundareswarar temple), and so the region was called Tiruppatirivanam or Tiruppatalavanam. Other names of this place in olden times, including during the Chola period, include Meenankaruppur and Inamchattiram.
The temple is said to date back to ancient times, and is regarded as so old that there is no date to the original temple. The local puranams speak of this place as where the devas and celestials would stay, when they came from their celestial world to earth.
The local belief is that those who have seen Sundareswarar here will not be touched by Yama. The temple tank – Brahma Teertham – is located across the road, to the south of the temple, and it is believed that those who take a bath here will get the same benefits as having performed the Poundareeka Yagam 16,000 times! To ensure that only those suitable for this benefit actually bathe in the temple, there is a murti of Vishnu on the banks of the Teertham, under a punnai tree.
Sage Agastyar and Kubera are said to have worshipped Siva here, after they worshipped at the nearby Koranattu Karuppur temple. This temple may well be regarded as an adjunct of the Koranattu Karuppur temple.
This is one of the many temples that belong to the Kumbakonam Pancha Krosha Sthalam set of temples. Other temples of this set include the nearby Sundareswarar temple at Koranattu Karuppur, the Nageswarar temple at Tirunageswaram, Airavateswarar temple at Darasuram, and the Mahalingeswarar temple at Tiruvidaimaruthur.
Though small, the temple is attractive and very well maintained by the ageing priest, who has lived in this temple since he was a child, and never even married, in order to serve Siva and Parvati. Going by the architecture of the temple and iconography here, it appears to be from the late Chola period – possibly the 12th century.
There is no dhwajasthambam, though there is a Nandi and bali peetham facing Siva. Inside the premises, one can find Vinayakar and Murugan in separate shrines flanking the garbhagriham, in addition to bas-reliefs of dwarapalakas. In the prakaram, the usual deities – Vinayakar, Murugan with his consorts Valli and Deivanai, Gajalakshmi, Bhairavar, Chandikeswarar and Navagraham – are present in separate shrines. The koshtams are also occupied by murtis of Nardhana Vinayakar, Dakshinamurti, Lingodhbhavar, Brahma and Durga. There is also a small shrine for the Tevaram saints Appar, Sambandar, Sundarar and Manikkavasagar.
While the temple is east-facing, the main entrance is to the south, on the Kallanai-Poompuhar road. The temple is administered by the Kasi Matham at Tiruppanandal.