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Mangueshi Temple
Category : Temples of Goa
Location  : Mangueshi,Ponda
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The temple of Mangesh at the Mangeshi hamlet of Priol in the Antruz Mahal (Ponda taluka) has an air of distinctive elegance. Laced with beautiful environs of lush green hills, mango and jackfruit groves, green carpet of paddy fields, swaying coconut palms, this beautiful temple dedicated to Shree Mangesh is a major tourist attraction of Goa.

The temple presents an amalgam of rich history, culture and architectural beauty. Its tall and majestic ‘deepstambha', the highest lamp tower in Goa is a landmark which is extremely beautiful to look at. When lighted with the traditional oil lamps during the evenings, its soothing impression on an ardent devotee is a world in itself.

The original site of the temple dedicated to this deity was Kushasthali or Kutthal (Modern Cortalim) in the Mormugao Taluka of today. It existed at Kushasthal for centuries until 1560 in a magnificent temple known for its wealth and glory and was established and managed by 24 families (Vangods) of Gaud Saraswat Brahmins of Vatsa and Kaundinya gotras. In 1560, anticipating the onslaught of the Portuguese and desecration of the deity in the year when the notorious Inquisition was established at Old Goa, the above mentioned devotees of Mangesh or Mangirish and its parivar devtas shifted the shivaling of Mangesh and its parivar devtas to ponda Taluka which was outside the Portuguese dominion in the 16th century.

The place where they shifted their deity was Priol, a beautiful village of Ponda taluka. The structure was a small temple covered with coconut leaves, supported by trunks of betelnut leaves and mud. The original temple of Mangesh at Cortalim was destroyed by the Portuguese in 1567 and a church came up there. In 1744 when it was rebuilt it was supported by wooden pillars. Then once again its renovation work commenced in October 1888 and the temple was ready in its renovated form in April 1890. Again it went into renovation in 1973. Dev Sharma was the ancestor of the devotees of Lord Mangesh of the Vasta Gotra, their ‘mulpurush'.

On the main Panaji - Ponda highway stands the majestic roadside Gateway to the temple leading to the long path to the main gate to the temple which is laced with the sacred ‘talav' (Tank). As you enter the Mahadwar of the temple one is presented with a beautiful view Sabhamandap of marble floorings, arcades of massive marble pillars. The Sabhamandap is richly decorated with Chandelairs of the 19th century.

The sanctum sanctorum (garbhagriha) of the temple which is decorated with a beautiful silver gateway housed the golden image of Lord Mangesh crowned atop with a ferocious image of Lord Narsinha. Decorative windows, handrailings, entrance columns, pediments, all give the temple an irresistible look. The deity looks bright decorated with locally available flowers, ornaments, shawl etc.

Local women sell beautiful local flowers, Bilvapatra (leaves), Karmalam sold on leaf plates with masala, Mango and jackfruit cakes (a Goan speciality know as saat).

Mangeshi gave birth to Dinanath Mangeshkar, India's greatest musician whose daughters Lata & Asha have created a great name in the country's music history. Dinanath Mangeshkar's house was located next to the temple and he used to serve in the temple and entertain the pilgrims and visitors with his songs. He gets his name from the place Mangeshi. He was born on December 29, 1900 at Mangeshi.

The Mangeshi temple is a fusion of Indo-Portuguese & Islamic style of architecture rich in history and culture and a great heritage monument of Goa and our country.




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