Monday, September 27, 2010

Gurramkonda Fort is the Historical Place to Visit


Gurramkonda (Gurram-Konda means Horse-hill) is a hill-fort located in Chittoor district on the Cuddapah (Kadapa) - Bangalore highway, around 32kms from Madanapalle. The fort stands on top of a 500ft hill with three almost perpendicular sides.

The fort was originally a mud & rock construction, under the control of the Vijayanagara (Hampi) kingdom. Later it passed through the hands of the Golconda sultans who strengthened the fortifications with rock walls, later the fort was taken over by the Marathas, the Cuddapah Nawabs, Hyder Ali & Tipu Sultan and was eventually by the British.

According to local legend, the hill-fort was called 'Gurramkonda' since there was a statue of a horse on top of the hill, which was believed to be the guardian of the fort. The fort was impregnable so long as the horse remained there. When the Marathas laid siege on the hill, they tried every trick in the book to conquer the fort but could not do so. When they learnt about the legend of the horse statue, a Maratha chief managed to scale the hill one night and carry away the horse. Thus the spell was broken and on the next attack, the fort fell to the Marathas.

Apart from a couple of temples on the hill, the main places to see are the fort ramparts, the Ranginimahal palace and the tomb of Mir Raza Ali Khan, who was Tipu Sultan's maternal uncle.

As a kid, I used to visit Kadapa quite often and every time we passed through Gurramkonda I would stare at the 'Ranginimahal' palace which is visible from the main road. I was quite fascinated by the quaint old structure, but never actually got the opportunity to stop and take a closer look at it. This time around I finally got to see Gurramkonda fort and the Ranginimahal from close quarters.

Some interesting pics and perspectives that capture the essence of Gurramkonda better than any of my pics do...

Courtesy: Google maps.

A pen & ink drawing of the Gurramkonda, made in 1802 by Thomas Fraser, a surveyor with the Madras Engineers...

Courtesy: British Library

A painting of the Gurramkonda fort by Thomas Fraser...

Courtesy: British Library

Description of the layout and the elevation of the Ranginimahal palace in Gurramkonda, drafted by Thomas Fraser...

Courtesy: British Library
A pic taken by the Archeological Survey of India, in 1898, which shows the eastern side of the Ranginimahal palace, Gurramkonda...

A pic taken by the Archeological Survey of India, in 1898, showing the tomb of Mir Raza Ali Khan...

These two persons are the tourists and as well as guides to our pics and gallary...

I am very thanks to these guys who are in the above pics.These two persons are the main authors to this content. If you find this post comment below your names




  1. u r done good job , u r shown my home tw

  2. Hi last time when i visited MPL from canada we went ot the hill top of Guramkonda fort ,there is lot lot more on the hill top I used to go to rani mahal and temple many times but this time went up . I have some video I will try to link it.You have posted really good photos,which are very rare to see for a normal person .
    sridhar namathirtham

  3. murali you have done superb job man... hatsoff to you......................

  4. Hi,
    I am so thrilled to see all these precious pics specially the sketches by Thomas Fraser and also the one's of 1898.
    Please upload some more sketches if u have else tell me from where u got those...

    Fazeel, Gurramkonda.

  5. excellent work man ... quite informative esp all the 19th century stuff . btw .. I am working on a book on Maratha history , and would like to use a couple of photos from this page . Do I have your permission ?

    Aneesh Gokhale

  6. Yes Aneesh, you can use these photos but mention this link where ever you publish this photos.Thanks for your comments on this.

  7. thanks . tho i did not use them eventually .

    plz visit