Thiruvannamalai: A 400 year old Nayakar period painting has been found in the marriage tower of the Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar Temple.
During a recent re-examination by Raj Panneer Selvam, President and Historian of the Thiruvannamalai Heritage Society, and Sudarshan and Udayaraja, a painting was found half-destroyed in the canopy of the Thirumanjana Tower, the southern royal tower of the Annamalaiyar Temple.
So far, only the paintings in the Rajagopuram, Puravi Mandapam, Kalyana Mandapam and West Thirumal passage in the Annamalaiyar temple have been documented and this painting has not been documented yet.
In this painting, Murugan is seated on a peacock on a pedestal and is depicted with a square, with Valli on his right and Deivana on his left. To adorn the head with a beautiful crown, he wears earrings and neck bracelets, chains, and wears a breastplate, tricycle and urus formula on the chest, respectively, with the lower body under the chest.
The right upper hand carries a diamond weapon, the lower hand carries the auspicious Abhaya seal, and the left upper hand carries the Shakti Kulisam seal with the lower left hand carrying the Varata seal. Wearing shoulder straps and bracelets on all hands gives a shoulder garland on both sides.
Murugan bends his left leg and hangs his right leg, dressed up to the thigh and sits on the pedestal of his vehicle, the peacock. One of the 16 kolas of Lord Murugan mentioned in the Kanda Purana is “Sikivakanar”.
Murugan bends his left leg and hangs his right leg, dressed up to the thigh and sits on the pedestal of his vehicle, the peacock. One of the 16 kolas of Lord Murugan according to the Kanda Purana is the “Sikivakanar”.
The peacock’s head turns to look at Murugan, with the snake’s tail crawling over its mouth and the snake’s body crawling over the peacock’s body. The vine on the right side of Murugan and the deity on the left side are not clearly visible as they are very damaged
The scene where Samaram blows
On the left, near Deivana, there is a scene of a woman wearing a traditional dress and necklace. The painting on the top left of it is completely distorted. As well as the Samaram Veesam Sadie woman shown near the vine on the right only the most distorted legs are visible. On top of that the painting on the right is also very damaged.
The painting features five colors of lime, black ink and metallic colors of red, yellow and green. It can be considered as a Nayakar period painting as all the colors and ornaments depicted in the painting here are in line with the Nayakar period painting of the Tanjore Big Temple and the Lipakshi Veerapathirar Temple in Andhra Pradesh. Not only that, but two similar collections near this painting are completely extinct, with only scattered colors appearing as patches. The painting also resembles a collection of paintings depicting the marriage of Kirija in the canopy of the Puravi Mandapam in this temple and the milky sea nectar shop.
King of Tanjore Nayak
The royal tower and the walls of the Thiruvannamalai temple are all rebuilt during the reign of Tanjore Nayaka king Sevappa Nayaka. Therefore, it can be considered that this painting dates back to the time of Sevappa Nayak, a shop part of the 16th century. About 400 years old this painting should be recovered from the ruins and the Tamil Nadu Archaeological Survey and the Hindu Temple Department should duly document and rebuild it before preserving this painting.