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Srisailam Devastanam Temple

 

Srisailam Devastanam Temple is picturesquely situated on a flat top of Nailamalai Hills. Srisailam is one of the most ancient kshetras in India, situated on the right side of the River Krishna in Kurnool District of Andhra Pradesh. This celebrated mountain is also named as Siridhan, Srigiri, Sirigiri, Sriparvatha and Srinagam. It has been a popular centre of Saivite pilgrimage for centuries.

Temple Complex
The existing main temple is a grand complex consisting of separate temples of Mallikarjuna and Bhramaramba, several sub shrines, pillared halls, mandapas, springs etc. The temple complex is beautifully fortified by impressive Prakaram wall of massive stones. The Prakaram wall has four Dwaras (gates) at four directions crowned by the Gopuras. The eastern entrance of the temple is the Mahadwaram.
The centre of the temple complex has an enclosure below the principal gates of the cardinals. The inner courtyard of the temple complex has Nandimandapa, Veerasiromandapa, the temple of Mallikarjuna, the temple of Bhramaramba. All are aligned in a row from east to west. Few minor shrines such as the temple of Vriddha Mallikarjuna, Sahasra Lingeswara, Arthanariswara, Veerabhadra, Uma Maheswara, and a group of five temples named as Pandava Prathista temples and a row of nine temples called as Navabrahma temples etc., are also located in the inner courtyard.

Temple History
The history of Srisailam is linked with tradition, which makes it difficult to identify the date of temple and the Gods enshrined therein. The inscriptions and the literary work speak about the glorious past of Srisailam, but archaeological research narrates a different story.
The Nasik inscription of Queen Naganika of the Satavahana dyanasty mentions Sirithana as one of the important places in the eastern extension of the empire. This is identified with the range of hills, presently known as Sriparvatha, which are the Nallamalai hill ranges extending from Srisailam up to Nagarjuna Konda.

Minor Shrines
The spacious complex of Srisailam temple houses several minor shrines by various ruling dynasties, military chiefs, rich merchants, female members of the royal families and so on. Among the minor shrines mention should be made to the temples of Vriddha Malikarjuna, Sahasralingeswara, Arthanariswara, Nava Brahma, Uma Maheswara, Rajarajeswari and Rajarajeswara, Virabhadra and Kumaraswamy.



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