HISTORY

 

To trace a history of a village of nearly 2500 years of existence and document them is not a thankful job. Dependence on hearsay information is always questionable but there is not much way out. Very few records, that too of latest periods are only available. Folk songs and literary evidences are not very much dependable as they contain the poetic exaggeration. However, an attempt is made to document whatever information available. Government agencies / records, archeological records, river courses study, sthalapuranam etc have been referred to in this compilation. We hurry to add, this is not complete. We need more and more information for posting/correcting the write up. We are amenable to corrections and do invite more information from all possible sources.

 

The village is assessed to have been formed nearly 2500 years ago when Pandia kings were ruling from Korkai port. Chittharu, a branch of Thambraparni was flowing east of Korkai & the river had taken a course via, Agaram and Palayakayal and joined the Bay of Bengal East of Palayakayal village. There are remnants of this course upto & East of Palayakayal. The tank in the Palayakayal village was also part of the river course. Near Agaram, sea shells are available in plenty indicating the river course. The Korkai port was actually the back waters of this river. Arumugamangalam was a settlement of Brahmins and had a name as Thrivedi mangalam and later us Thirumangainagar. Brahmins generally settled along river courses. The Chittaru being back waters probably the preferred to settle on the southern banks of Arumugamangalam tank. The area covered by Kottarakurichi south of tank and Perumpadai chathan Koil on north where probably the location of army settlements of the king as the name indicates. The area east of tank upto Chambadi area where the cultivable lands providing employments to the soldiers during peace occasions. This tank was a rain fed tank having catchment on north & west. The villages Idayarkadu, Kavalkadu, Akkasalai etc surrounding Korkai indicate the political authority that was existing in Korkai. From these the dates of the village may be deduced to be around 4th century BC. Till recently, nearly 200 years back the village had lots of scholars in Tamil and Sanskrit. Dr. Swaminatha Iyer had visited this village to collect rare manuscripts of Pathupattu, etc. Folk lore indicate there were many Sakthi Upasakas in the village and probably the name Thirumangainagar is indicative of that. It is not clear when the name got changed to its present form.

  

The Ayirathen Vinayagar is believed to have been brought in by the brahmins when one of the Pandia kings namely komaravallabhan ruling from Korkai, performed a yaga with a large gang brahmins collected from the banks of river Narmada. The Sthalapuranam goes that when one of them could not participate, Lord Vigneshwara upon the King's prayer took the form of the Brahmin and concluded the yaga and blessed him. The name of the deity in the villages Ayirathen Vinayagar meaning one thousandth and the king installed the deity on the settlement of the brahmins on the banks of tank.  And Thrivedi Mangalam was build around. Copper Plates inscriptions add proof to this theory.

 

Another story is that at the end of the yaga, some of the brahmins settled in Tamilnadu along the banks of the tank. One such a settlement of Thrivedi mangalam, the present Arumugamangalam.

 

The name indicates the abundance of scholars in three vedas and it is not  uncommon that such brahmins  went to different areas  and temple  for reciting vedas. Alwarthirunagar temple records indicates  honouring of such brahmins from  this place. These brahmins installed the first Vinayaga in Tamilnadu probably in the open under  the shades of Arasa  tree. The temple  construction was taken up  in  later periods and developed further  by various rulers including, Ukrama pandian, Rayar,  Thirumalai naicker etc.

 

The village was also called Thirumangai nagar as  Goddess Lakshmi  prayed in this village to Lord Vinayaga.   Folk lore  say the name Arumugamangalam was  established as Lord Muruga as Arumuga nainar  worshipped Lord Vinayaga.   

 

The temple is contemporary to the Navathirupathis on the banks of Thambraparni and also to the Thiruchendur temple in its earlier form. The Sankumukeshwarar  koil and Vishnu temple in Palayakayal also may be that old.