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Native ameMadurai
Other nameமதுரை
NicknameAthens of the East
StateTamil Nadu
DistrictMadurai district
MayorThenmozhi Gopinathan
Total Area20 sq mi (51.82 km2)
Altitude8 m
Total Population1016885 (2011)
Metro Population1462420 (2011)
Other information
Time zoneIST (UTC+5:30)
Pincode625 0xx
VehicleTN-58,TN-59 and TN-64

     Home | City | Madurai

Madurai ( , -tamɐd̪ɯrəj; formerly Madura) is the third largest city in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. It served as the capital city of the Pandyan Kingdom. It is the administrative headquarters of Madurai District and is famous for its temples built by Pandyan and Madurai Nayak kings in the Dravidian style of architecture. It is also one of India's prominent Hindu pilgrimage centres.

Madurai's recorded history goes back to the 3rd century BC and the city is mentioned by Megasthenes, the Greek ambassador to India and Kautilya, the minister of the Mauryan Emperor Chandragupta Maurya. The city was the principal administrative and cultural centre of the Pandyan dynasty which ruled over the southern parts of Tamil Nadu and Kerala till the first half of the 14th century AD. In about 1311, the Pandyan dynasty was overthrown by the Delhi Sultanate which established the province of Ma'bar which later became independent as the Ma'bar Sultanate. When the Ma'bar Sultanate began to decline in the latter years of the 14th century, Madurai was absorbed into the Vijayanagar Empire. The viceroys of the Vijayanagar Empire established the Madurai Nayak kingdom and ruled as independent kings from 1559 to 1736. After a brief period of occupation by Chanda Sahib and the Carnatic kingdom, Madurai was annexed by the British East India Company in 1801.

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