History of Uraiyur

Uraiyur is the un-honored capital of Cholas. By hook or by crook it not ever got the attention like its later capital, Thanjavur. The early Chola phase is scrappy since all statistics is merely based on literature and poetry. Though, it is noticeable that Uraiyur was a thriving trade center located on the banks of river Kaveri and was regularly visited by the Romans and the Greeks.

Many Chola kings ruled the city, and most eminent of them being Karikala Cholan. His background and achievement grade a slight diversion from the main topic to the city of Uraiyur. Though he started reigning at a young age, he perfectly took control over the justice and he use to have an upright hearing and announce instant adjudication. While presiding over the criminal trials, he used to wear a white wig to prepare himself making more mature. Besides to his legal expertise, Karikala Cholan was a devotee of fine poetry and evidently he once gave gold coins for a 300 line poem. A total of 1,600,000 gold coins which means 5333 gold coins for each line!

The location near to Kaveri river of Uraiyur region was well known for its international trade and was visited frequently by Romans and Greeks. The Kaveri river provided a perfect gangway for transportation, the small boats carried goods out to Uraiyur to the ancient port city of Poompuhar on the Bay of Bengal, where the large ships to long distance routes were sited.

Textiles materials from Chola province had significant demand internationally, especially Uraiyur’s muslin cloths (known as Argaritic in Greek) was valued to be the finest perhaps in the world, was the preferred fabric for the upper class. The muslin cloths made of low cost materials were sold at high rates to foreign traders, thereby fabricating big revenues to the Chola kingdom. Nevertheless, Uraiyur is a must see place to visit in Tamil Nadu.

Historical Attractions near Uraiyur

  1. Rockfort Temple – This is the most noticeable landmark of Trichy, the rock itself is contemplated to be of a billion of years old. It is home to an attractive cave temple and the most popular Ganesha temple. This was built by the Pallavas. Getting to the top of the rock is strenuous but it’s eye catching views make it worth to visit.
  2. Kallanai ( Grand Anicut ) – Kallanai is an insightful water flow system that splits Kaveri into multiple brooks that irrigate the rice belt of Thanjavur. It is the greatest achievement of Karikala Cholan from his immense engineering skills. This was also constructed as a barrier on both sides of the river Kaveri ( from Uraiyur to Kallanai ), thereby protecting his province from frequent flooding
  3. Srirangam – Srirangam is located right across from Uraiyur to Kaveri and is prominent for the Ranganatha temple. The temple has an unbeaten spiritual ambience and is considered to be a must visit place at least once in a lifetime.
  4. Anbil and Koviladi – Both these villages are situated near to Uraiyur and represents among a very few places where non-temple Chola carvings have been discovered.

To summarize, Uraiyur and its connected villages are interesting to soak in the history of Tamil Nadu…