Udayagiri Fort

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Udayakiri fort.jpg

There are two forts named Udayagiri Fort in South India.

Fort in Tamil Nadu (Kanyakumari District)[edit]

Udayagiri Fort in Kanyakumari District, Tamil Nadu, with a view of the Western Ghats and hillock within the fort.

Location[edit]

The fort in Tamil Nadu is located at a distance of 14 km from Nagercoil town in Kanyakumari District. The fort is situated on the Thiruvananthapuram-Nagercoil National highway at Puliyoorkurichi. This was the most important military barracks of the Travancore rulers, when Padmanabhapuram was their capital. 8°14′38.4″N 77°19′55.2″E / 8.244000°N 77.332000°E / 8.244000; 77.332000

History[edit]

It had been originally built in the 17th century, and then rebuilt later by Maharaja Marthanda Varma of Travancore in the 18th century.

Enclosing an area of about 90 acres (36 ha), with an isolated hill 260 feet (79 m) high, the fort contains an old foundry which was used for casting guns.

The fort was rebuilt during the reign of Marthanda Varma, Venad King, during 1741-44 under the supervision of Eustachius De Lannoy, a Flemish naval commander of the Dutch East India Company, who later served as the Chief of the Travancore Army.[1]

In the early days, the fort was of strategic importance. Prisoners captured in the campaign against Tippu Sultan were confined in the fort for some time. In 1810, the East India Company's Army under Colonel Leger marched into the Travancore State through the Aramboly Pass to quell a rebellion under the leadership of Velu Thambi Dalava.

In the later years, the English East India Company's troops were stationed there till the middle of the 19th century. Foundry for the manufacture of guns, mortars and cannonballs were also established within the fort under the supervision of the General.

Architecture[edit]

De Lannoy's Tomb at the Udayagiri Fort on the Kanyakumari-Trivandrum highway in Kanyakumari District.

The fort is built of massive granite blocks around an isolated hillock.

The tombs of the Dutch Admiral Eustachius De Lannoy, (in whose honour the fort was once called Dillanai Kottai— De Lennoy's Fort), and of his wife and son can still be found inside a partly ruined chapel in the fort.

De Lannoy's body was buried within the fort and a chapel was built at his burial site . De Lannoy's tombstone lies within the walls of the ruined chapel. The inscriptions on his stone are both in Tamil and in Latin. His wife and son were buried by his side.

Recently, officials of the Department of Archaeology found an underground tunnel within the fort.

Presently, the fort has been turned into a bio-diversity park by the Tamil Nadu forest department, with sites of historical importance, such as De Lannoy's tomb, remaining as protected archaeological sites under the Archaeological Department of India.

Location[edit]

The fort in Tamil Nadu state is located in Thuckalay Town in Kanyakumari district

References[edit]

External links[edit]