Madurai

Madurai

Madurai (/ˈmʌdʊraɪ/ MUH-doo-rai,[3][failed verification][4][failed verification] .mw-parser-output .IPA-label-small{font-size:85%}.mw-parser-output .references .IPA-label-small,.mw-parser-output .infobox .IPA-label-small,.mw-parser-output .navbox .IPA-label-small{font-size:100%}US also /ˌmɑːdəˈraɪ/ MAH-də-RY,[4][5][6] Tamil: [mɐðuɾɐi̯]) is a major city in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is the cultural capital of Tamil Nadu and the administrative headquarters of Madurai District, which is governed by the Madurai Municipal Corporation established in 1 November 1866. As of the 2011 census, it is the third largest metropolis in Tamil Nadu after Chennai and Coimbatore in terms of population and 27th largest urban agglomeration in India.[7] Located on the banks of River Vaigai, Madurai has been a major settlement for two millennia and has a documented history of more than 2500 years.[8][9] It is often referred to as "Thoonga Nagaram", meaning "the city that never sleeps".[10] Madurai is closely associated with the Tamil language. The third Tamil Sangam, a major congregation of Tamil scholars, is said to have been held in the city. The recorded history of the city goes back to the 3rd century BCE, being mentioned by Megasthenes, the Greek ambassador to the Mauryan Empire, and Kautilya, a minister of the Mauryan emperor Chandragupta Maurya. Signs of human settlements and Roman trade links dating back to 300 BCE are evident from excavations by Archeological Survey of India in Manalur.[9][11][12] The city is believed to be of significant antiquity and has been ruled, at different times, by the Pandyan Kingdom, Chola Empire, Madurai Sultanate, Vijayanagar Empire, Madurai Nayaks, Carnatic kingdom, and the British East India Company's British Raj. The city has a number of historical monuments, with the Koodal Azhagar temple, Meenakshi Temple and the Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal being the most prominent.