Brihadeeswara Temple is one of the most spectacular pieces of Indian Architecture. It is a magnificent temple in the Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu, India. It is the Adobe of Lord Shiva. Hindu devotees worship God with the utmost respect. It is not only a holy place but also a world heritage site and attracts Tourists from all over the world.
History of Brihadeeswara Temple:
During the Chola Kingdom, king Raja Raja Chola-1 extended his kingdom by defeating the enemy kings. To honour his victories in his reign, he intended to build a big temple to honour Lord Shiva. This duty was allotted to the famous architect Sama Varma. Sama Varma was designed according to the ideas of Raja Raja Chola. Cholas, the great Art, patronArtupported him in constructing the temple. It took 12 long years to complete, and Raja Raja Chola performed the first Kumbh-Abhishek am.
The architecture of Brihadeeswara Temple:
The boundary walls are very high. The entrance of the temple leads to a substantially rectangular enclosure. The Inner part of the temple was divided into regions, and each piece was allotted to the musicians, workers, priests and the public. There are long corridors around the main temple. At the eastern and western ends of the aisles, 108 Shivalingas were arranged.
The temple’s main attraction is Vimana, built over the sanctum 216 feet high. This is made of black granite and weighs around 80 tons. How the workers were brought to that height is still a surprising doubt. Another interesting sculpture is Nandi, 25 tons in weight, 12 feet in height, 19.5 feet in length and 18.25 feet in width. The Nandi seated place is called Nayak Mandapam.
Garbhagriha of Brihadeeswara temple:
The inner wall of the garbhagriha has sculpted 108 dance poses called Karmas performed by Lord Shiva himself. The Shiva Lingam is called Peruvudaiya, Rasjarajeshwaramudvya. It is a vast Lingam. Raja Raja Chola-1 crowded it with 12.5 feet tall finial of 9.25 kilogram of Choppers plated with 800 grams of gold. The temple has spacious grounds, several pillared halls, shrines, and 250 Lingams.
The chief architect Samavarama designed the unique structure of Brihadeeswara temple because no shadows of the temple were cast on the ground at any season of the year. The temple is a significant contribution of the Chola dynasty to the Dravidian style of temple architecture.
The temple is famous for its Art on the cArtings. We can see the Fresco paintings on the ceiling of the corridors. The images of these ceilings are still bright in colour and have not faded for 1000 years.