Temple Towns and Pilgrimage Centres

In medieval India, there were towns which developed around a temple and were called as temple towns.

Thanjavur, the capital of Chola kingdom was one such temple town.

Let us discuss more features of Temple Towns and Pilgrimage Centres

Temple towns served as an important pattern for the development of cities.

These were also very important to economy and society of the kingdom.

Many temples were built by rulers to show their devotion towards various gods.

The rulers gave huge land grants and money to perform rituals.

Also, these grants were used to feed pilgrims and priests and for celebrating rituals.

Even the pilgrims who visits there were asked to give donations to the temple

This wealth aided in financing, trading and banking for the temple and was utilised efficiently

To fulfill the needs of temples and pilgrims, various workers, artists and priests settled near temples.

These activities leads to the growth of the temple towns.

Some of the temple towns are Kanchipuram and Madurai in Tamil Nadu, Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, Bhillasvamin and Somnath.

Slowly, these pilgrimage centers were developed into several townships.

Example of such towns are Vrindavan in Uttar Pradesh and Tiruvannamalai in Tamil Nadu.

A classic example of this coexistence is Ajmer in Rajasthan, the capital of the Chauhan kings.

Later, Ajmer became the sub headquarters under the Mughals.

During 12th century, Khwaja Muinuddin Chishti, a sufi saint shifted there who attracted devotees from all groups

Pushkar Lake, near Ajmer is an attraction point for pilgrims since ancient times.

Revision

The temple towns serves as an important pattern for the development of cities.

Many temples were built by rulers to show their devotion towards various gods.

Rulers also supports temples by giving lands and money for performing rituals

To fulfill the needs of temples and pilgrims, various workers, artists and priests settled near temples.

Slowly, these pilgrimage centers were developed into several townships like Vrindavan and Tiruvannamalai.

The End