Thimmamma Marrimanu: A 550 yr old giant banyan tree
Published: 10:58 PM, 15 September 2019
Thimmamma Marrimanu is a 550 years old giant and mysterious banyan tree located in India’s Andhra Pradesh. From a distance, it looks like a small forest amidst sprawling drylands. But when you move closer you become surprised, many tourists cannot believe their eyes. Because you can see it is just one banyan tree and 550 years old.
There are many stories about the banyan tree. The banyan tree made it to the Guinness Book of records in the1989. The glorious canopy of this giant banyan tree has 1,100-odd prop roots. The tree has sprung up in a place 35 km. The giant tree has a canopy of 19,107 sq. meters and spread over 8 acres. For this, the banyan tree is familiar with the biggest tree in the world.
The name of its tree comes from a pious woman from the 15th century called Thimmamma. The giant banyan tree spread from Kadiri to Ananthapur district 70km away from Horsely Hills of Andhra Pradesh, India. Standing in the Thimmamma Marrimanu village.
History of Thimmamma Marrimanu
It is a considered fact in India, every monument or temple that has a story or a legend behind. Anantapur District is a treasure of history, legends, and mythology. There every village, roads have an unending story, which stories are told by the locals. The stories are also revealed by the carvings, sculptures, and places. The same case with this banyan tree. There is built a temple called ‘Thimmamma temple’.
This pious lady Thimmamma Marrimanu was born to the Setti Balija couple Mangamma and Sennakka Venkatappa in the year of 1394 AD. She was married to Bala Veerayya. Thimmamma was very dedicated to her husband.
One day her husband was seriously ill. The righteous lady cared for her husband devotedly. Bala Veerayya died in the year 1434. Out of grief, this lady Thimmamma sacrificed herself on the funeral pyre which was known as Sati in those days. Many superstitions and myths are still covered with this area for the funeral pyre. Surroundings of the giant tree many villagers are very big worshipers of Thimmamma temple.
It is believed that the pole in the northeast direction of the pyre grew to be this big banyan tree. People also believed that childless couples who come to pray at this temple are gifted with children. Many visitors from different parts of the country and foreigners come here to pray to Thimmamma. Fortunately for visitors, the tree has grown to a size that can accommodate 20,000 people beneath its canopy
Also every year a big ‘Jatra’ is conducted there. That day the pilgrims of faiths come during the ‘Shivaratri Festival’. A big procession is organized during this festival. Thousands of people flock here to worship ‘Thimmamma’ on this occasion.
Indian mythology symbolizes this tree as ‘Trimurthy” (three Lords), a confluence of Lord Vishnu as the bark, Lord Brahma the roots and Lord Shiva as the branches.
In the face of destruction
This giant tree has been recently subjected to vandalism and careless mistreatment. Fearing that this will become irreparable damage. Locals and the Forest Department have set up specific safety measures to preserve the tree for the future. Four forest rangers have been exclusively appointed to safeguard this tree against destructive elements. With good care, the tree can survive more centuries and pass on the inspiring tale.
Many people visit this place and relax their soul in a peaceful ambiance. The tree itself looks like a mini forest and is a major picnic spot in the surrounding areas. The route to this place is also pretty exciting and gives us a fresh feel. The way which goes through green fields makes the visitor’s ride very enjoyable.
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