Sree Parasurama retrieved from the ocean the land mass identified as Kerala. He then entrusted the religious duties to twelve Nampoothiri (Kerala Brahmin) families, divided the land and handed over the administration to selected royal lines. These various dynasties including the ‘Cheraman Perumals’ as the Travancore royal house was known, trace their descent to those far off times. By some decree of destiny the governance of Malayala Nadu cam to be vested in two major dynasties or ‘Swaroopams’ – ‘Thrippappoor’ and Perumpadappu (Travancore and Kochi respectively) with ‘Nediyirippu Swaroopam’ under the Zamorin of Calicut (Kozhikode) following close behind. Another ‘Swaroopam’ commanding weight was the ‘Kola Swaroopam’ centred in Kannoor in North Kerala. No attempt is being made here to go in for a comparative evaluation or to examine the interconnections of these dynasties. Suffice to state that their bold signatures remain undimmed on the vast historical expanse of these sands. Due to many reasons Venad, later to be famous as Travancore (‘Thiruvithamcoor’ in local jargon) acquired a very significant position in the scheme of affairs. Sree Padmanabha Swamy, the recipient of worship of this dynasty for centuries as its dynastic, family and personal Deity, was revered by the successive monarchs as the sole cause for all prosperity and good fortune that came by their fair land.

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Origin Of The Temple

Origin of the Temple 

(Sthala Puranam)

It is impossible to pinpoint the exact time when the Temple originated since it retreats to the undated past. As repeated references surface even in Puranic literature, its antiquity stands established. Even though conflicting opinions are available concerning the period of the Sangam era, the Temple is seen mentioned there. At the same time the ‘Sthala Puranam’ dealing with the narration of its coming into existence is comparatively younger in age. The names of the two venerable sage’s appear in this connection – Vilvamangalathu Swamiyar of Nampoothiri caste and Divakara Muni of Tulu stock, both believed to be of the 9th century A.D. Yet another opinion circulates that both of them were in reality one and the same. Whatever the case may be there is significant representation of both sections in. the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple. While the Tarananalloor Tantries and the Pushpanjali Swamiyars both belong to the Nampoothiri community, all the other priests of the Temple inclusive of the four ‘Nambies’ attached to the main sanctums are Malayala and Tulu ‘Potties’ belonging to the ‘Ikkara’ and ‘Akkara Desies’. In presenting the ‘Sthala Puranam`, Vilvamangalam Swamiyar’s name is being adopted by virtue of the fact that it is more well known. Continue reading

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