This is a pretty, calm and clean village . There are two parallel roads intersected by lanes. This layout was arranged by the Divakar in the 16th century. The lanes do not meet the main road face to face. This was probable done as a defensive measure. The name of one lane is “Mukyachi Galli” or” lane of the dumb” This lane is located about a furlong from the Bhairavnath Temple. It leads to the sea.
History of Diveagar
Till the 14th Century AD the place was known as Deepagar. It was a flourishing city. The Satvahanas, Mauryas, Rashtrakutas and Shilahars ruled over the area. The Konkan coast has a recorded history for over 2000 years. There was active trade from the ports on the coast. Amongst the extant sources, the first reference to Diveagar is on a copper plate dated 973 AD. It is during the reign of King Chitaraj. This copper plate is known as “Velasi Agar” Velasi Agar is identified with the village Velasi on the Dive Agar Velasi road.
The Coast at Diveagar
A special feature of Diveagar is its 5 kilometre long coast line. It spreads between the Velas Creek on the right and Korli River on the left. The beach is velvety and pristine with a back- drop of Kevda trees and the coconut palms.
Shri Siddhinath Bhairav and Shri Kedarnath Temples
The first mentioned is a little distance from the Ganapati temple. The latter is a little further up. It is not known authentically as to who built these temples. They may have belonged to the Nath Panthi (order). When in the 6th century Diwakar founded Diveagar, the temple was known as Bhanukadevi. Both the temples are relatively small, built from purplish stone, and have tiled roof. The idols inside are made out of black rock and are not very well chiselled. Both have a courtyard in front. In one of them a pole has been fixed on the ground. This is used for bagada ritual. A big fair is held in May which is noted for two practices known as gal tipane and hatkhode. These two events, in one form or the other, are to be seen in most Konkan villages.
Shri Siddhivinayak Temple
The temple is important as the village deity of Diveagar. There are references to indicate that it was the family deity of the Shilahar Kings also. The present temple was constructed by the villagers in 1968.There is a large Assembly Hall and Sanctum. Within, on a marble tiled platform, rests the black stone image of Gajanan The writing on the statue has become indistinct but the whole appearance is very pleasing. On the right of the deity there is a copper statue of “Annapurnadevi”. She holds a vessel in one hand and a ladle in the other. It has been carved on top of a tiger’s mouth on the hood of a five-faced cobra and testifies its age as that of the Shilahara period. ( about 800 to 1200 years ago)
Shri Roopnarayan Temple
The lane in front of Bhairavnth temple, the lane of the dumb, also leads to the sea. The Roopnarayan and Sundarnarayna temples are located here. On the right is the former. The structure has been renovated but the sanctum testifies to its great age. The walls are of stone, a foot and a half to two feet thick and one has to bend low to enter. Thus one is forced to bow before the deity. Another reason may be to bring anyone entering the sanctum within striking range of guards standing within in the corners. Visitors may try this. The corners are visible only when the whole neck is put inside.
Behind the water tank there is a cupola which houses the statute of Shri Sundarnarayan. It is not a very beautiful one, probably a result of lying in the open for eight centuries. The temple is about 60 or 65 years old. The sequence of shankh, padma, chakra and gada in the hands indicates that the statue represents Hari.
Shri Uttareshwar Temple
The Shiva Temple at the northern end of Diveagar is called Uttareshwar. The outer walls of purplish stone and the tile roof appears modern but the sanctum and the ruined statutes indicate that the original temple must have been 7 to 8 hundred years old.
This temple was recently built near the State Transport Bus Stand. Gajantalakshmi temples are rare. Inside is a modern marble statue of the deity . However, behind the temple, lying in sun and rain is the original, old, statute. A careful look will reveal the deity with the hands held by elephants in their trunks. Today only one elephant can be clearly seen. This old sculpture deserves better and should be installed within the temple.
Shilalekh (Stone Inscription)
Although the copper plates are no longer at Diveagar, two inscriptions can still be seen. The first is kept on a platform near the village Panchayat and the second is in private land belonging to Shri. Bal Joshi. In the first the text is in Arabic and is much defaced due to lying in the open. But what can be read shows that the Nizamshahi Sultan Burhan Nizam Shah has been mentioned. The place where the inscription is kept is known by he name “dhaj” probably a corruption of “dhwaj”(flag).
The second inscription is the Gadhegal. The sun and the moon have been carved at the top and states “yavat chandra divakaro” meaning that as long as the moon(chandra) and sun(divakar) exist so long will the information given on the slab remain. The style of letters indicate a period 1294 AD and records that during the reign of Shilahar King Anant Dev, the lord of Mahamandaleshwar, an official named Ram mandalik gave alms of a cottage to one Ganapati Nayak. Below this text is a repulsive carving. It shows, a donkey in forced to have sexual intercourse with a woman. It may be interpreted as a warning that anyone who opposes the presents recorded will be punished thus. The “punishment” is so repulsive that it must have had a deterrent effect.We have given this information merely to present a slice of history. Visitors must remember that they are in a private area and must avoid passing ribald remarks.
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