Thrissur

Thrissur (also Trichur, Trissur) is a revenue district of Kerala situated in the central part of that state. Spanning an area of about 3,032 km2, Thrissur district is home to over 10% of Kerala’s population. Thrissur district was formed on July 1, 1949, with the headquarters at Thrissur City. Thrissur is known as the cultural capital of Kerala, and the land of Poorams. The district is famous for its ancient temples, churches, and mosques. Thrissur Pooram is the most colourful and spectacular temple festival in Kerala. The district was formed on July 1, 1949.

The name Thrissur is derived from ‘Thiru-Shiva-Perur’ (Malayalam / Tamil), which translates to “The city with the name of the Lord Siva”. Thrissur was also known as “Vrishabhadripuram” and “Then Kailasam” (Kailasam of the south) in ancient days.Another interpretation is ‘Tri-shiva-peroor’ or the big land with three Shiva temples, which refers to the three places where Lord Shiva resides – namely Vadakkunnathan temple, Asokeswaram Siva temple and Irattachira Siva temple.

From ancient times, Thrissur District has played a part in the political history of south India. The early political history of the District is interlinked with that of the Cheras of the Sangam age, who ruled over vast portions of Kerala with their capital at Vanchi. The whole of the present Thrissur District was included in the early Chera Empire. The District can claim to have played a part in fostering the trade relations between Kerala and the outside world in the ancient and medieval period.

Kodungalloor, which had the distinction of being the “Primum Emporium India”, gave shelter to all the three communities which have contributed to the prosperity of Malabar. These three communities are the Christians, the Jews and the Muslims. The history of Thrissur district from the 9th to the 12th centuries is the history of Kulasekharas of Mahodayapuram and the history since the 12th century is the history of the rise and growth of Perumpadappu Swarupam.

In 1790 Raja Rama Varma (1790–1805) popularly known as Saktan Tampuran ascended the throne of Cochin. With the accession of this ruler the English or modern period in the history of Cochin and of the District began. Saktan Tampuran was mainly responsible for the destruction of the power of the feudal Nair chieftains and increase of royal power. Another force in the public life of Trichur and its suburbs was the Namboodithiri community and Menons of Royal ancestry. A large part of the Trichur Taluk was for long under the domination of the Yogiatiripppads, the ecclesiastical heads of the Vadakkunnathan and Perumanam Devaswoms.

The wave of nationalism and political consciousness which swept through the country since the early decades of this century has its repercussions in the District as well. Thrissur District has been in the forefront of the country-wide movement for temple entry and abolition of untouchability. The Guruvayur Satyagraha is a memorable episode in the history of the national movement.

According to the 2011 census Thrissur district has a population of 3,110,327, roughly equal to the nation of Mongolia or the US state of Iowa.This gives it a ranking of 113th in India (out of a total of 640).The district has a population density of 1,026 inhabitants per square kilometre (2,660/sq mi).Its population growth rate over the decade 2001-2011 was 4.58%.Thrissur has a sex ratio of 1109 females for every 1000 males, and a literacy rate of 95.32%.Thrissur was also the second highest urbanized district in Kerala after Ernakulam.

Thrissur is situated in southwestern India (10.52°N 76.21°E) and is in the central part of Kerala. Thrissur is at sea level and spans an area of about 3032 km². It is bounded on the north by small parts of Malappuram district, on the east and north by Palakkad district, on the east by small parts of Coimbatore district of Tamil Nadu, on the south by Ernakulam district, and on the west by the Arabian Sea (54 km). Descending from the heights of the Western Ghats in the east, the land slopes towards the west forming three distinct natural divisions – the highlands, the plains and the sea board.

Thrissur, with its rich history, cultural heritage and archaeological wealth, is called as cultural capital of Kerala. The town is famous for its Pooram festival. This district is also a veritable treasure trove of history. The sylvan beauty of Northern Kerala begins here, with tiny, tranquil hamlets by the sides of tediously flowing rivers. An ancient cultural center, Thrissur houses the Kerala Kalamandalam, the Kerala Sahitya Academy, the Kerala Lalitakala Academy and the Kerala Sangeeta Nataka Academy.