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About Kumbakonam
Kumbakonam is very famous for the large number of temples and tanks very next to Kanchepuram town, Tamil Nadu. Kumbakonam being the headquarters of Kumbakonam taluk has different names like Kudanthai, Kudamooku and Baskarashetram from time immemorial. Kumbakonam town is very famous for Mahamagam festival, which is celebrated once in every 12 years. This town has 188 temples of various historical periods.
At the time of Mahamagam festival, it is believed that in Mahamagam tank, the holy stream of water from the famous rivers like Ganga, Yamuna, Saraswathi, Sarayu,Godavari, Mahanadi, Narmatha, Payoshnl and Cauvery are mingle together and is also believed that taking bath would get rid of sins according to Hindu religion.

The existing Government Arts College at Kumbakonam is one of the oldest colleges in Tamil Nadu and gained the title as "Cambridge of South India" in the olden days. The famous mathematician Ramanujam studied in this institution.

The town was originally a religious centre, with the presence of large number of temples. It has gained importance as a Commercial and Industrial (small-scale) centre during the last quarter of the 19th century. During the early period of 20th century, the town has gained importance especially for silk and metal manufacturing activities, which supports sizable number of workers in the town.

Reaching Mode of Kumbakonam

By Bus - Chennai, Villupuram, Panruti,Vadalur, Meensuruti- Kumbakonam
By Train - Chennai, Villupuram,Cuddalore, Chidambaram Mayiladudurai, Kumbakonam.
By Air - Nearer Airports Chennai , Tanjore,Trichy

History of Kumbakonam

Kumbakonam is at present a Selection Grade Municipality, and it is the taluk Headquarters of Kumbakonam Taluk. The town is identified by many temples sprinkled all over the town, most of them are very ancient temples.One of many temples, most striking is the Lord Sarangapany, a Vaishanavite temple. This was probably built up by the Nayak Kings during 15th Century A.D. It consists of the twelve storied and 147 feet height. The Ramasamy temple which depicts the paintings of Ramayanam is another important Vaishanavite temple. Kumbeswara temple is an important Saivaite temple situated almost in the central part of the town. The important festival of the town is the Mahamaham festival. It takes place once in 12 years during the Tamil Month of Masi(February/March) and lakhs of pilgrim from various parts of India visit Kumbakonam and take a holy bath in the sacred Mahamaham tank which is situated in the heart of the town.

The temple at Thirunageswarar( Oppliyappan Sannadhi), the Lord siva temple which is 8 kms east of Kumbakonam .
Sri Thirupureeswarar temple at Pateeswaram which is 5kms southeast of Kumbakonam, was constructed by Govinda Dikshithar, a Minister of Naik King. Acchathappa during 16th Century. Another famous temple is Swamimalai which is one among the six abodes of Lord Muruga. swamimalai is situated 8 kms west of Kumbakonam. Many Nayanmars have sung in praise of this temple.

The Govt. Arts College at Kumbakonam which exits now is one of the very old colleges in the Tamil Nadu State and it gained a title once as " The Cambridge of South India".The famous Mathematician Ramanujam studied in the Institution in this town.
The Porter Hall was built int he memory of a former principal of the college in 1885. In 1853, a handsome Protestant Church was erected in the town.

All the South Indian Brass Pooja articles and utensils are manufactured in Kumbakonam and these articles are manufactured nowhere in South India other than Kumbakonam. KuthuVilakku and Statues are the famous articles. Stainless Steel utensils are manufactured.Betelnuts, Suparis are manufactured in Kumbakonam. The Major Suppliers of Silk Sarees to the Indian Silk Saree Market is Kumbakonam Silk Industry.

Mahamaham Tank

The famous Mahamaham Tank of Kumbakonam is located near the Head Post Office. This tank covers an area of 6.2 acres and is in a shape of a pot. The tank is Surrounded by 16 small Mandapams and a "Nava Kannika Temple" in the Eastern Side. Govinda Theekshitan, the Chieftain, of Achutha Nayaka of Thanjavur, constructed sixteen Mandapams and stone steps around this tank. Brahmatheerthesar, Mukunthar, Thalesar, Rishakesar, Umaipakesar, Nairuthesar, Brahmeesar, Gangatheerthesar and Seshtra Paleesar, are the names of deities located in these Mandapams.

Brahmatheerthesar temple is located at the Northwestern portion of this tank. This temple is also known as "Thula Mandapam" where a big physical balance is provided for making contribution to the temple. It is also believed that this tank consists of 19 Holy Theerthams around the tank periphery and another theertham at the centre. Vayu, Ganga, Brahma, Yamuna, Kubera, Gothavarai, Esaniam, Narmadha, Indra, Saraswathi, Akni, Cauvery, Nagam, Niruthi, Palaru, Thevan, Varunan, Saratu and Kannia are names of the Theerthams believed to be located inside this tank. Apart from the above said Mandapams, around the tank area, a temple known as Abimukeshar Kovil occupies the eastern portion of the tank Kasi Vishwanathar Kovil situated on the northern bank of Mahamaham Tank and the temple and the big Gopuram in the front were constructed during the period of Nayaka rule.

During this festival it is believed that in Mahamaham tank the famous rivers like the Ganga, the Yamuna, etc... meet together and taking bath in Mahamaham, would wash off all the sins. During the last Mahamaham festival, 40 lakhs people gathered in this town. It is expected that about 50 lakhs of people will gather in this town for tha Mahamaham to be celebrated in March - 2004

16 (sodasa) Linga resides 16 Mandapam (Temple) around Mahamaham tank

1. Brammatheertheshwarar 5. Baaneshwarar 9. Agasthyeshwarar 13. Brammeshwarar
2. Mukundeshwarar 6. Koneshwarar 10. Vyaneshwarar 14. Gangatheshwarar
3. Dhaneshwarar 7. Bhakthikeshwarar 11. Umaibakeshwarar 15. Mukthatheertheshwarar
4. Virushabeshwarar 8. Bhairaveshwarar 12. Nairutheeshwarar 16. Shethrabaleshwarar

20 Theertham's in Mahamaham tank

1. Vayu Theertham 6. Godavari Theertham 11. Agni Theertham 16. Bayoshni Theertham
2. Ganga Theertham 7. Eshana Theertham 12. Cauvery Theertham 17. Deva Theertham
3. Bramma Theertham 8. Narmada Theertham 13. Yama Theertham 18. Varunai Theertham
4. Yamuna Theertham 9. Saraswathi Theertham 14. Kumari Theertham 19. Sarayu Theertham
5. Kubera Theertham 10. Indira Theertham 15. Niruthi Theertham 20. Kanya Theertham
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