Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal

Namagiri Thaayar, Namakkal

Vaishnavite Temples - Namakkal District


Narasimha, facing east


Namakkal Thaayar, facing east

Other Deities

Garuda, Senai Mudhalvar, Ramanujar, Lakshmi Narayana, Vinayaka, Naagar. Inner Prakaram – Desikar, Krishna with consorts, Vellaithai Krishnan, Nammazhwar, Rama with Sita and Lakshmana

Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is a large west-facing temple dedicated to Narasimha, the main deity. The temple is better known as Namagiri Thaayar Temple. Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is situated on the western side of the Namakkal Hill Fort. This hill is in a north-south direction. On the southeastern side is the large Kamalayalam Temple pond. On the east is a temple for Lord Vishnu as Renganadar. On the west side on either side of the Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal temple are two smaller temple tanks. The entrance to Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is through a large Mukha Mandapam, more of an unfinished Gopuram on the west side. A stone Dwajasthambam, Balipeedam, and flagstaff are in front in the large outer Prakaram. After this is another entrance mandapam similar to the outer one that leads into the inner Prakaram. As we start circumambulating the outer prakaram, on the north side is the shrine of Goddess Namagiri Lakshmi Thaayar facing east. The goddess is a large idol in a grand sitting posture. Further up towards the east is the shrine of Senai Mudhalvar. Continuing on is the entrance from the north side to the Sanctum Sanctorum of Lord Narasimha. This sanctum is a rock-cut cave, square in shape with three cells, housing the 8 feet tall idol of Narasimha in a sitting posture with Shiva and Brahma standing on either side. Under the main deity’s feet are two figures considered the Sun and Moon gods. There is a grand mandapam before the sanctum sanctorum with beautifully carved pillars. Garuda is seen in front of the sanctum. Around the inner prakaram, which is only before the sanctum is the shrines and idols of Desikar, Krishna with Bhama and Rukmini, Nammazhwar, Rama with Sita, and Lakshmana and Ramanujar. There are several beautiful carvings and sculptures worthy of note here at Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal including Lord Vishnu’s Varaha Avatar, Trivikrama, Narasimha slaying Hiranyakashipu, Lord Vishnu in a reclining pose, and more. Turning back you continue on the same way out towards the south to exit the inner prakaram. Outside, in the outer Prakaram on the south side is the sanctum of Lakshmi Narayana, where the lord, a 7 feet tall idol, is seen sitting with goddess Mahalakshmi on his lap.

Holy Water (Theertham) – Kamalayalam Tank, and other Theerthams

Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) – No information


Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is considered to have been built during the 8th century by the Pandya Kings by historians. As per Historian Soundara Rajan Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is dated to a pre-Varagunan I (800–830 CE) period. Saint Purandaradasa (c.1484 – 1565 CE) composed his famous song “Simha Rupanada Sri Hari, Namagirishane” sitting in front of Lord Narasimha here at Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal. The Namakkal Fort was built during the reign of Thirumalai Nayak of Madurai in the 17th century CE. This fort has been under the occupation of the Britishers and Tipu Sultan at some points in time.


Narasimha, an Avatar of Lord Vishnu, took up the form to destroy the Asura Hiranyakashipu who had safeguarded his life through various boons. The Narasimha Avatar overcame all the conditions and killed him. Goddess Mahalakshmi was performing penance here when Anjaneya passed above carrying a Saligrama stone he had found in the Gandaki River in Nepal. He was returning after keeping the Sanjeevi Hill back in its original position. He wanted to have a bath. Anjaneya left the stone in her custody till he came back. Mahalakshmi accepted it telling him that she will keep it down if he was late. Anjaneya was late in coming back, the stone was getting heavier and she kept it down. It kept getting larger and formed the hill. Anjaneya returned to see the miracle and both of them were blessed with the vision of Lord Narasimha. Goddess Mahalakshmi decided to continue staying here at Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal.

The great and renowned Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan credited his acumen to his family goddess, Namakkal Thaayar. He used to look to her for inspiration in his work and claimed to dream of blood drops that symbolized her male consort, Narasimha/ After these dreams he would receive visions of scrolls of complex mathematical content unfolding before his eyes. He often said, “An equation for me has no meaning unless it represents a thought of God”.


Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal is in the center of Namakkal Town on the west side of Namagiri Hill. Namakkal is about 50 kilometers south of Salem, 50 kilometers southeast of Erode, and 85 kilometers northwest of Thiruchirapalli.

Stay and Food

Namakkal has a few places for stay and food. Hotel Ananda Bhavan in the street opposite the Namagiri Thaayar Namakkal temple is an old place that serves decent food.

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