Temples and Temple Patronage in Kakatiya Andhra

Cynthia Talbot

in Precolonial India in Practice

Published in print October 2001 | ISBN: 9780195136616
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834716 | DOI:
Temples and Temple Patronage in Kakatiya Andhra

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Stone inscriptions document religious gifts made to Hindu temples by a wide range of donors who sought not only religious benefit but also social prestige and political advancement. Temple patronage was a major stimulus to economic growth since it led to the extension of agriculture and the creation of irrigation facilities. The older temples of coastal Andhra such as Draksharama and Srisailam received the most endowments, mainly in the form of livestock, whereas the newer temples of the interior were generally given land. The patrons of these two types of temples also differed in occupational background, demonstrating that the communities constituted by temple worship varied considerably. The standard model of the Hindu temple institution as a harmonious force for social integration and economic redistribution thus needs to be modified in recognition of the competitive character of temple patronage.

Keywords: Draksharama; economic; endowments; Hindu; patronage; redistribution; religious gifts; Srisailam; temple

Chapter.  20784 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Hinduism

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