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| Last Updated:: 12/09/2023












Mayiladuthurai (formerly known by its Sanskrit name Mayuram) is a town in Nagapattinam district in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu.  Mayiladuthurai is known for the Mayuranathaswami Temple, a prominent Shaivite shrine. The main icon is a lingam and the presiding deity is called Mayuranathar because the Hindu goddess Parvathi worshipped Shiva here in the form of a mayura




According to mythology, the goddess Parvathi, the consort of Shiva, once offended him. Shiva was so annoyed he cursed Parvathi to be born as a peahen. Later, when Parvathi repented, Shiva reduced this sentence. Parvathi had to pray first at Mylapore in Chennai and then at Mayiladuthurai, at the end of which she was ridden of her curse and became known as "Abhayambal". She is also known by the names Abhayapradhambikai, Abhayambikai, Anjalanayaki and Anjalai.




On the day of the new moon in the Tamil month of Aippasi (November–December), religious Hindus have a ceremonial bath in the temple tank as it is believed to purify them from sins. An annual dance festival called the Mayura Natyanjali festival is celebrated within the precincts of the temple each year.









It is believed that Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswathi come to Cauvery during the month of Iyppasi every year to get rid of their sins that are collected from the pilgrims who take a holy dip in them and recharge themselves for the next year. The whole month of Iyppasi is the festival period and is called Thula Utsav. People from all over the place throng the banks of Cauvery to take a holy dip. The last day of Iyppasi called “Kadaimugam” and the next day, i.e., the first day of Karthigai called “Mudavan Muzhukku” are the most sacred days. The day before kadaimugam, car festival (Rath) is celebrated where cars from Vallalar temple, Mayuranathar temple and Parimala Ranganathar temple go around in their car streets.




Other important festivals celebrated at the temple are Navarathri, Adi Pooram, Avani Moolam, Karthigai Deepam and Vaikashi Brahmavotsavam.




The town situated on the banks of the river Cauvery has numerous, noteworthy Hindu temples making it a popular pilgrimage destination. Temples like Sri Vadhanyeshwar temple, Punugiswarar Temple, Sri Parimala Ranganathaswami temple, Sri Kasi Vishwanathaswami temple, Kurukai Sivan Temple and Dakshinamoorthy temple attract devotees from across South India.





The town is considered the gateway to the Navagraha temple, the nine temples associated with planetary deities.