Sathyapureeswarar Temple (Kanchipuram - Tamil Nadu)

On my way back from Unamancheri Ramar Temple, I called up the temple priest of Mambakkam Temple as he wanted me to, as he had offered to take me to the Sathyapuriswarar Temple, another ancient temple located in Ponmar which is again in the Medavakkam - Mambakkam Road.
He came along with the keys of the temple and I went inside. Yes, I was a bit disappointed, thanks to the granite flooring and multi color painted gopuram!!! A bit of the ancient-ness gone.
Very much unusally this one is a south facing temple. There are very very few south facing temples and this unknown temple in a very small village is one of those. But the Lord is east facing. The Lord here is Sathyapureeswarar and His Consort here is Sathyapureeswari, who faces south
There was a pillar relief of Mahishasura Mardhini who was coated with a layer of Sandalwood paste and then there was a pillar relief of Dhenupureeswarar
Remember Dhenupuriswarar of Madambakkam? Here, the relief depicts the legend behind that temple. 
Also there was a pillar relief of the person who contributed to the temple in 16th C AD. Other reliefs were of Lord Krishna, Bhima, Agasthiyar, Narasimhar, Bikshadanar etc.
I came around the temple and on the Southwestern corner of the temple, I spotted some epitaphs and my face filled with glee. Looking at my face, the priest instantly said that I was happy only after seeing the epitaphs. This inscription belongs to the Vijaya Nagara Empire. This was inscribed during 1520 AD during the reign of Sadasivarayar, nephew of Krishna Deva Raya. This location is referred to as Thyaga Vinodha Nalloore aka Ponmaru. This inscription also refers to a small village called Poyilicheri near Ponmar.
Enroute I should have spotted a Perumal Temple in ruins which I sadly missed. I came to know of its existance only later on.
The ceiling of the temple had some fishes in bas relief. 
Also present were a snake engulfing the moon in 3 progressive steps. This depicts the legend behind lunar eclipse.
The exterior of the temple has a separate shrine of Kasi Viswanathar. The outer areas are very beautifully engraved. I haven't seen this kind of a detailing much, barring Hoysala Architechture
The pillar reliefs in the outerside, had these little pillars in them. Master of engraving, I must say. 
There were some unfinished sculptures all around, which included a Lingothbavar as well.
Other shrines here are of Brahma, Valampuri Vinayakar aka Lord Ganesha with trunk turned to right, Lord Muruga, and Bhairavar.
Behind the temple was a small pond. But I had to take a lot of care to walking around the temple, thanks to the drunkards, it had a lot of broken glasses. The priest himself was very upset on that!!!

In Chennai - Tamil Nadu

To Ponmar:
From Medavakkam: 8km on Medavakkam-Mambakkam Road towards Mambakkam
From Mambakkam: 4km on the Medavakkam-Mambakkam Road towards Medavakkam
From Tambaram: 15km via Camproad, Bharat University, Agaram

From Ponmar to the temple 
600m in the Ponmar-Navalur Road
In the Medavakkam Mambakkam Road turn Ponmar-Navalur Road at Ponmar and in half a km you'll spot it to your left. If not, enquire the locals for an Iswaran Koil.

Google Map Co-ordinates: 12.855465,80.176946

Ph. no. of the temple priest: Mr.Hariharan +91 98845 81931


An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.


  1. there are so many such beautiful temples... we can never see all of them! and you are so lucky to see so many!!

  2. You are right Bhusha, I too used to feel agrieved at the paintings that they do these days.. the original stone itself would have been great.. Loved this unique place.. Thanks

  3. Amazing temple and sculptures!

  4. I love the relief depicting the legend behind the Lunar eclipse,it's amazing!

  5. Wow ,Great find . thanks for sharing .

  6. Brilliant sculptures. Hope to visit this temple soon.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. nice temple enriched with sculptures

    nice historical info

    thanks for sharing

  9. Its nice that you are visiting these seldom frequented temples. Nice snaps of sculptures. Good description.

  10. @Anu,
    So true. Whole life is not enough to see all the temples!!!

    Yeah... Indeed the stone would have been good than the jarring colors... :(

    Thanks dear.. :)

    Thanks sweetheart... :)

    @Team G, Pooja, Krishna,
    Thanks dears... :)

    @Ram Cheta,
    Thank you so much Cheta... :)

  11. Mam thanks for the info of Iraivi Sathyapureeswari and also the epigraphy. As you mentioned the temple is not facing South. The temple is facing east only and the entrance is from south. Normally a jolly work will be installed in front of the dwajasthambam and Palipeedam to see moolavar. This sort of arrangement is available in many of the temples of Tamil nadu, including many Paadal Petra Shiva Sthalangal. This is to contain the power of moolavar within the temple.
    Thanks and regards
    V A Veluswamy

    1. Thank you so much for your comment Mr.Velusamy!!!

  12. Happen to visit the temple. Unfortunately the priest didn't open the temple. Didn't have his number either to contact. I was told that the temple is being opened on auspicious days only.


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