Government Museum


Tirunelveli District belonging to Southern Pandi State and which was once known as “SALI PATHIYUR’ is an ancient district. Freedom fighters like Poolithevar, VeerapandiyaKattabomman, VeeranAlagumuthuKone, poets like SubramaniaBharathi, PapanasamSivam and great leaders like KappalOttiyaTamilar V.O.Chidambaranar were born in this district. Though divided into many districts for administrative reasons, the famous river Tambaraparani flowing in this district makes it rich. This part was ruled by various emperors like Chola, Pandiya, Chera and Naickers. The Mother Goddess fossil found during excavation of 2000 yr old Adichanallur area is world famous. Cave temples, Tamil brahmi inscriptions, Jain inscriptions show that Jain religion was also followed in Tirunelveli. Tirunelveli has a unique Tamil slang.

This district stretches over an area of 6838 square Kilo metres comprising of seven taluks, namely Tirunelveli, Palayamkottai, Tenkasi, Shenkottai, Ambasamudram, Nanguneri and Radhapuram and has a total population of nearly 30,00,000. Rivers like Tambaraparani, Manimutharu, Sitharu, Pachaiaru, Kadambanathi and Jambunathi make the district fertile. EllakkaiMalai, AgathiaMalai, KurtalaMalai and PothigaiMalai are the natural abodes of tribes such as Kanikars, Pazhiyar and KattuNaicker. Moondradaipu, Koonthankulam, Mundanthurai and Kalakadu have a wide variety of flora and fauna. Dams at Papanasam and Manimutharu help in increasing the fertility of the soil, apart from being a basic source in generating Electric hydel power.

The important minerals, of the district are limestone monocits, graphite, dolomite, gypsum and ilemanite. The cement factory at Thalaiyuthu and the mat weaving centre at Pathamadai are the examples of rapid industrial growth in the District. To further add to the glory of the district is this museum which was inaugurated on December 31st 1992, as 12th district museum which with its exquisite bronzes stone sculptures, wood carvings, paintings, old and new stone implements, Iron weapons, coins, fossils, tribal objects, birds, animals, fishes, marine objects which are being exhibited in separate show cases.

1 Mr.P.SOUNDRA PANDIYAN 31/12/1992 30/09/1996
2 Mr.N.SULAIMAAN 01/10/1996 18/05/1997
3 Mrs.S.KRISHNAMMAL 19/05/1997 23/04/2000
4 Mr.S.SRINIVASAN 24/04/2000 18/11/2001
5 Mr.C.GOVINDRAJ 19/11/2001 28/02/2005
6 Mr.C.GOVINDRAJ 01/03/2004 09/10/2012

Sculpture Garden

The stone sculptures of Mahaveera, Vishnu, Kali, Durga, some Hero stones and inscriptions are being exhibited in front of the Government Museum. In 1547 at Ilavelangal, TirunelveliPerumal alias Vettum Perumal along with his soldiers was attacked unexpectedly by Nayak soldiers. In this attack ten Pandiya soldiers were killed. To commemorate the death of these ten soldiers, ten Hero stones were installed and the stones are also exhibited in the sculpture garden.

Introducing Gallery

Once we enter the museum we are welcomed by introducing gallery which contains photographs of Tenkasi, Kasiviswanathar temple, Krishnapuram temple, cave temples mural paintings of Sankarankovil, Courtallem water falls and photo graphs depicting various handicrafts practiced in Tirunelveli district such as Karukurichi Terracotta and Pathamadai mat products.

Anthropology Gallery

Adichanallur is the world’s biggest megalithic burial yard. The potteries of red and black ware,iron, shell, gold and bronze which are of antique value were unearthed along with burial urns and these are being exhibited in the show cases. The Paleolithic stone implements like hand axe, flakes, themicrolithic stone implements collected from Sayerpuram and the Neolithic stone implements collected from the Tribal peoples are being exhibited in show cases. Iron and wooden Boomerangs have been used as warfare weapons and hunting weapons by the Tribal people of Pandya Nadu. Showcases with dioramas explaining the occupation, culture, lifestyle of tribes living Tirunelveli district like Kani, Pazhiyar, Kattunayakar are exhibited. Representing the Tirunelveli folks, their art, culture, dolls, Head pots, Pavaikoothu, and musical instruments like Nadaswaram, Tavil, Tappu, Flute are also exhibited.

Archaeology Gallery

Things like betelbox, incenseburner, hanginglamps, Pavailamp, Spitton, kendi made of brass used by the people of Karaikudi in their day to day activities are exhibited here. A set of metal cost coins from 5th century B.C right down through the age of Kushans, Guptas, Chalukya, Mughals, Cholas, Pandyas, Vijaya Nagar and the East India company also adorn the gallery.

Umaithurai Gallery

Umaithurai ,the brother of veerapondiyakattapomman was once imprisoned by the britisher in this room. To remember his activities Umaithurai gallery was opened where we can find his life history through photos and weapons used by veerapadiyakattapomman.

Natural Science Gallery

Many medicinal herbs and shrubs which have been collected from Tirunelveli Siddha Medical College are exhibited in pressed herbarium sheets. Also barks, oil seeds used for making medicines are exhibited in glass jars. Marine animals like crabs, fishes, sea algaes, sea urchins, sea cucumber, star fish and sea horse are being displayed in their aquatic environment. Nine planets of the Solar system is explained by means of diorama in the TirunelveliGovt Museum. Minerals and ores namely Crysolite, Limestone, Natuieroits, Amonite, Turilight, begmadite, Cordiorite, Quartz, Silimanite, Dolomite, Haemadite, Pyrite and few fossils are exhibited.

Painting Gallery

Kalamkari paintings oil paintings water colour paintings and patikpaintings which explain the traditional paintings of Tamil Nadu, adorn the painting gallery.

Weekly Holiday : Fridays and Second Saturdays

Three National Holidays : (Republic day, Independence day, Gandhi Jeyanthi)

Visiting Hours : 9.30 A.M to 5.00 P.M

Entrance Fee
Details Amount
Adult Rs. 5/-
Child Rs.3/-
School Children Entry Free
Foreigners Rs. 100/-
Camera Rs. 20/-
Videograph Rs. 100

Other activities of the Museum

Educational activities like conducting competitions, lectures and seminars for students and public and other art related activities.

Location & Contact Details

St. Marg Road, (Near Supdt. of Police Office), Palayamkottai,Tirunelveli – 627 002

For photo gallery …

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