Mahabalipuram tourism: the history of the Seven Pagodas, tsunami
Archaeological site and the history of the myth of the Seven Pagodas of Mahabalipuram in India, the charm of the Shore Temple tied to temples submerged.
Seven Pagodas of Mahabalipuram
Seven Pagodas is the name that was given by the first European explorers who came to the Indian city of Mahabalipuram to the fact that in it, according to a popular legend, there were seven ancient temples like the Shore Temple, built in the eighth century on the banks of the Gulf Bengal and of which still can be seen the remains. The Shore Temple, in the Indian beliefs, expressing the myth of Brahmanism that aims to explain the origin of the Pagodas in supernatural ways.
At that time the prince reigned Hiranyakasipu who would not worship the god Vishnu contrary to his son Prahlada who instead was full of faith. For this reason, the prince sent away the child for a certain period of time after which allowed him to return.
But again there were some disagreements between the two always about Vishnu so bright that the father, losing patience, kicked a pillar from which emerged immediately Vishnu in the form of a man with a lion’s head that punished killing Hiranyakasipu, thus allowing Prahlada to succeed him becoming the ruler and also having a son who called Bali.
Many European discoverers, including Marco Polo, made some hints as to the seven pagodas account of their voyage to the Indian colonies. The merit of spreading knowledge of this myth in Europe is recognized mainly to the poet Robert Southey, who in one of his poems, referring to the city using it for the name of Bali, in honor of its founder, says that there are some pagodas.
At the time of the catastrophic tsunami that struck much of the land bordering the Indian Ocean, the water near Mahabalipuram shrank by about 500 meters, with that infamous effect that occurs just before that such an event you tear down the coast.
Those who were on the beach were eyewitnesses of what happened and noted briefly emerge from troubled waters a very long row of huge rocks together with some statues and small buildings that had been covered with sand for so many years. The most famous archaeological find due to the tsunami is the largest statue of a lion in a sitting position, which remained in the light due to the changing trends of the coastline on the beach in Mahabalipuram, has become an attraction for the entire local tourism.
In April of 2005 was composed a team of archaeologists Indians, helped by means of the navy national, began searching off the coast of Mahabalipuram using sophisticated methods such as sonar technology. Thanks to these extensive research made very interesting discoveries. The stones that the eyewitnesses said they saw immediately before the occurrence of the tsunami belonged to a high wall about 200 cm long and less than a hundred meters.
Also found were also two temples submerged and third temple excavated rock less than 500 meters from the coast. Although this can not confirm absolutely the existence of seven pagodas, allows us to state with certainty that the area of religious Mahabalipuram was much wider.
After tsunami, has remained uncovered also a large stone with numerous inscriptions.
The archelogi increasingly intrigued have dug even near this stone coming to discover another temple always Pallava era along with numerous coins and other objects from the ancient Hindu ceremonies.