The Brihadishvara Temple, called the Great Temple, is the most magnificent creation of the Cholas. The Cholas followed the Pallavas as the most powerful dynasty in the south and ruled from the 9th to the 14th century. The greatest Chola king, Rajaraja I built this temple in his capital city of Thanjavur in the 11th century. As a symbol of his great power, he built a shrine that was five times. taller than any temple existing at the time and one of the biggest structures in the country. Originally called the Rajarajeshvara temple, the Brihadishvara dedicated to Shiva.
The Chola Empire not only stretched all across the Deccan peninsula but also into Sri Lanka. They had a flourishing trade with Burma, and Indonesia and even sent an envoy to the court of the emperor of China. The visit of the Chola ambassador mentioned in the chronicles of the royal Chinese court. The Chola kings built great temples at Kumbhakonam, Thiruvayur, Srirangan, Gangaikondacholapuram and Chidambaram but their greatest creation remains the Brihadishvara at Thanjavur.
Architecture of The Brihadishvara temple
Brihadeeswara Temple or Rajarajeshwaram Temple built in the early 11th century. It also known as Peruvutiyar Kovil. The entire temple made of granite stone. It is the first and only temple of its kind in the world that is made of granite. It attracts people with its grandeur, architecture, and central dome. There is a moat on two sides of the Brihadeshwar temple and the Anaikat river flows on one side. Unlike other temples, this temple has a large minaret above the sanctum, which is 216 feet high. This temple declared a World Heritage Site on the list of UNESCO.
The Brihadishvara temple was built between 1003-1010 AD by the Chola ruler Rajaraja Chola. It also called Rajarajeshwara Temple after his name. It counted among the largest structures in the world of its time. It is thirteen (13) a storeyed building (the number of stories is odd in all Hindu establishments) and is about 66 meters high. This temple dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva.