Teppa Tank, Madura
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Teppakulam tank at Madurai, part of the Earl of Jersey Collection: 'India. Bombay to Madras', taken by an unknown photographer in the 1880s. The temple city of Madurai is dominated by the imposing complex of Minakshi Sundareshvara, one of the major architectural achievements of the Nayaka period. The construction of the temple was made possible by the patronage of Tirumala Nayak (1623-1659) as was the tank that is situated at the eastern end of the town, about two miles from the temple. The large rectangular Teppakulam tank is dedicated to Minakshi (Parvati) and the god Sundareshvara (Shiva). In the middle of the reservoir on a square island is a small white-washed towered temple. The tank is used for ritual ablutions and is also the site of an annual festival in which images of Minakshi and Sundareshvara are placed in a raft lit by oil-lamps and floated on the water.