Needur has been mentioned in ancient Sangam literature (Akanaanooru), and its richness and
natural wealth have been described by Sundarar and Appar. It is believed that this shrine
will remain indestructible through the great deluge (hence Needur). This Shivastalam is
located at a distance of 1 km from the Needur railway station near Mayiladuturai. Tiruanniyur,
another Shivastalam is located in the vicinity. Needur is considered to
be the 21st amongst the Tevara Shivastalams located North of the river
Legends: Indra, Surya,
Chandra and Kali are said to have worshipped here. Indra is believed to have fashioned a
Sivalingam with the earth from the banks of the Kaveri. Shiva is also known as
Karkateswarar and this name comes from the belief that a crab had offered worship to
Shiva. Legend has it that Surya worshipped Shiva at daybreak on the first Sunday in the
months of Aries and Leo. Needur is also known as Vakularanyam, Makilaranyam and
The Temple: Appar has sung of Tiruneedur and Tiruppunkur in the same Patikam. He is said to have visited Tirukkolakka with Sambandar and then gone on to Karuppariyalur, Tiruppunkur
on his way to Tiruneedur. As in Tiruppunkur, the
Shivalingam is a Prithivi lingam (Putru); there is also a shrine to Tiruppunkur
Sivalokanathar here. Sundarar refers to Shiva here as Needur Koothan.
There is an imposing shrine to Bhadrakali - Aalaalasundari here. The shrine to Sun is
worshipped on Sundays in the month of Leo. Ambal here is also known as Aditya
The ancient structure from the period of the Nayanmars, was replaced with a stone
structure in the first decade of the 12th century. The Somaskanda image of Shiva here, is
considered to be a picture perfect and it dates back to the end of the 11th century. .
Inscriptions from the period of Kulottunga I, Rajadiraja II and Rajaraja Chola III are
found in this temple speaking of endowments made during the later Chola period (11th -
13th centuries). Three worship services are offered each day here.