Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai is a large temple with a 150 feet Rajagopuram and 2 Prakarams. The Lingam is said to be a Suyambu (Self occuring). The Nandi here is facing west. Stone inscriptions discovered here at Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai mentions the temple as Gramardh Anathesvarar (this has been corrupted to the deity’s present name) or Oor Bhagangondaruliya Nayanar. An explanation for this name can be seen in the Legend section below.
Holy Water (Theertham) – Not known
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) – Not known
Several stone inscriptions have been found here ranging from about 900 CE till 1500 CE. The earliest of them is from the period of Rajaraja I which mentions the name of the Lord as Oorbhagangondaruliya Nayanar. Other inscriptions are from the reignal periods of Rajendra I, Rajaraja II, Rajadhi Raja II, Rajaraja III, Kulothunga I, Kulothinga III, Vikrama Chola, Kopperunchinga and Vijayanagar Kings. These inscriptions are many in number and in broad mention of renovations, the lord’s names, the place’s name, land donations, donation for recitation of Manickavasagar’s hymns Tiruchchalal every sunday (Vikrama Chola), victories, cows and more.
The name of the place is mentioned as Iraivanaraiyur alias Sri Sola-Kerala Chaturvedimangalam in Palur Kottam, a district of Miladu Jananatha Valanadu in some of the inscriptions.
As per a story written by one Purana Thirumalai Naadhar in 1430 CE, Deivigan, a Malaiyaman Chief, slew an Asura called Karundan who was a brahmin in his previous birth and incurred the Brahmahatti curse. To rid himself of the curse he performed a sacrifice and colonises four neighbouring villages with 400 brahmins and realizes that there are 400 more still left to be taken care of. When he is in a dilemma the Lord of Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai temple appeared before him as a brahmin and told him: ‘Gift away this village now. Give one half to the brahmins and the other half to me alone; then they will be satisfied’. Deivigan does so and the Brahmin reveals himself. Thus the lord here at Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai came to be known as Oor Bhagam Kondaruliya Nayanar — the Lord who accepted one half of the village.
Indra and Sage Mirugandu are believed to have worshiped here at Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai.
Arthanareeswarar Elavanasurkottai is 12 kilometers on the Ulundurpet – Kallakurichi Road