Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Naganathar||Ambal / Thayar:||Swarnavalli|
|Agamam:||Age (years):||Timing:||6 to 12 & 4 to 7||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Vaippu sthalam||–|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Tiruthangur||District:||Sivaganga|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Karaikudi (19 km)||Pudukkottai (50 km)|
|Ramanathapuram (92 km)||Thanjavur (109 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
Located almost halfway between Avudaiyar Kovil and Pudukkottai is Tiruthangur. This place is not to be confused with Tiruthangal (the site of Tiruthangalappan Perumal or Nindra Narayana Perumal temple, a Divya Desam, and the Karunelli Nathar Siva temple, in Virudhunagar district) or Tiruthengur (often also written a Tiruthangur, the site of the Vellimalai Nathar temple, a Paadal Petra Sthalam, in Tiruvarur district).
Besides the above, there is very little information on the history and sthala puranam of this temple. The place likely got its name – Tiruthangur – due to some sthala puranam involving Lakshmi (Sri, or Tiru) staying here and worshipping Siva for some purpose.
This temple – originally from the late Pandya period or thereafter (and hence dated to the late 14th or 15th century) used to be very large in size, with lots of land associated with it. In the last two hundred years, the temple was fully taken down and rebuilt, as a result of which the structural temple we see today is more heavily oriented towards the Nagarathar style of architecture.
A small entrance archway welcomes devotees, followed by a fairly large open space. After this we have the separate temples for Siva and Parvati, much like the Devakottai Sundareswarar temple.
The Siva temple has a five-tiered raja gopuram, after which is a dhwajasthambam, Nandi mandapam and bali peetham. Straight ahead is a long corridor as part of the mandapam that leads us to the moolavar shrine. This place has superb artwork on the walls and ceilings, and the temple as a whole features excellent examples of Nagarathar architecture, typical of Chettinadu temples in this region.
In the koshtam are shrines for Vinayakar, Dakshinamurti, Lingodhbhavar, Brahma and Durga. In the prakaram around the garbhagriham are separate shrines for Vinayakar, Murugan with his consorts Valli and Deivanai, Gajalakshmi, Chandikeswarar and Bhairavar. There is a separate Navagraham shrine, as also a shrine for the Tevaram Four (Appar, Sambandar, Sundarar and Manikkavasagar).
The Amman temple is to the north, abutting the Siva temple, and can be accessed both directly from outside (through its own 3-tiered gopuram), as well as through a passage from the Siva temple.
As is fairly standard with Pandya temples, Amman has a separate Nandi for her. Since both Siva and Parvati face east, this temple depicts their kalyana kolam.
There are some inscriptions in the temple, particularly on the pillars in the passageway connecting the Siva and Amman shrines.
The original temple is said to be from the early Pandya period, while the structural temple was initially built around the 14th century by the later Pandyas. The Nagarathar community has taken significant steps to restore the temple in the last few centuries. At present, the temple is maintained and administered by the Sivaganga Samasthanam Devasthanam.
During our visit in December 2021, the temple was undergoing preparations for kumbhabhishekam.