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Legends of Maddur

The Ugranarasimhaswamy temple is one of the oldest temples in Maddur. The stone idol of Ugranarasimha­swamy has eight hands and three eyes. On the left side of Narasimha sits Garuda, a mythological bird, the vehicle of the deity.

To the right is young Prahlada. According to legend, it was to save him that Vishnu took Ugranarasimha’s form. Goddess Mahalakshmi is also depicted. 

The temple has a rajagopura (tower) of six levels. The temple is said to have been built between  the11th and 12th century, and renovated by  Hoysala rulers.

Legend has it that a saint named Kadamba came here to pay obeisance to Ugranarasimaswamy. He utilised the water from the river nearby for several rituals, and the place got the name ‘Kadamba Punyakshetra’ while the  river got the name ‘Kadamba nadi’.

When the palegaras (local chieftains) started ruling the region, they used this place for storing their weapons and ammunitions. This is why the place got the name ‘Madduru’ (maddu is explosives in Kannada.)Near the Ugranarasimhaswamy temple are the temples of Varadarajaswamy and Rama built on a small rock.

 Steps have been provided to climb the rock and reach the temple. Another legend has it that Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana’s mother suffered from poor eyesight, and when he came here along with her, he was advised to visit Kanchi with his mother to get her eyesight back.

Instead, Vishnuvardhana summoned sculptors from Kanchi and got an idol made exactly like the original. 

Local belief has it that the king’s mother got her eyesight back.  

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