Though archeological evidence testifies to the existence of thousand shrines and Sangharamas
built in the days of Buddha, or even earlier period the recorded histority, with inscriptions dates back to sixth
century, when king Mahendra Varman of Pallava dynasty was on the throne, with the title of
Chettikari, which means builder of temples. He built innumerable temples both for Vishnu and Siva
after conversion to Saivism by the Saint Appar. The new found faith held such grip on him that he
destroyed a Jain monastery, though he was an ardent Jain previously. His son Narasimhavarman
preserved the legacy by constructing many temples at Kancni and monolithic shrines at
The Kailasaiiatha temple a perfect gem in
the elegant Pallava style existing now is the contribution of Narasimhavarman II.
Mukteeswar temple and Vaikunta Perumal temple at Vishnu Kanchi are the gifts of Nandi Varman II:
The Cholas who followed next also continued building of temples. The
Rastrakutas, Kakatiyas and Pandyan Kings who succeeded them built in their own way.
Then came the rule of Vijayanagara, who not only honoured the practice but added many architectural marvels.
The temples of Pandava Perumal temple, Vilakkotai etc. are their contribution to list down a few.
Then appeared on the scene Marathas, Mohammadan and Britishers. Instead of construction,
destruction followed and hence the observance of ruins now everywhere in the famous