Pronunciation and Phonetics

Learning proper pronunciation can be done without much knowledge of phonetics, actually. A basic knowledge, however, helps to make pronunciation clearer and thus facilitates the process of learning how to speak a foreign language properly.

eAmbalam introduces a phonetic chart which is based on Dhevanagari script. The sounds of vowels and consonants and other speech sounds in Sanskrit and the languages which have completely or mostly borrowed from it can be covered with the help of the chart. A few other sounds common to some languages in this group and outside are also put in. Unique sounds of some languages are specified too.

Diacritical marks are used to aid perfect pronunciation. World over, these marks have been created and propagated by scholars to make understanding of the differences in speech sounds in different languages better. Team eAmbalam also has created a phonetic chart which helps even first timers to pronounce words accurately.

Our Phonetic chart is unique, comprehensive, learner friendly and is divided into four columns wherein:
  • In the first column, the letter is written with the associated diacritical mark.
  • In the second column, an example is given in Dhevanagari language containing the letter.
  • In the third column, an example is given in English, which contains the sound closes to the letter or instructions in few cases, to facilitate better understanding.
  • In the fourth column, an audio button is placed with the help of which you can hear the actual pronunciation of the letter.
An open minded approach with the above introduction and guidelines will definitely enable the user to understand the speech sounds of any language and pronounce it like a native, which is eAmbalam’s aim in this exercise.

Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English
A or a Aḍavu Arise
Ā or ā Ānanda Vast
I or i Indhira Sing
Ī or ī Īśha Meal
U or u U ṣhā Good
Ū or ū Ū rdhhva Boost
R or r Riṣh i Try
Ṛ or ṛ Ni ṛ uti Grr!
Lr or lr   Pronounce L and R together.
E or e Eka Ate
AI or ai Aikya Sight
O or o Ojas Robe
AU or au Audh ā rya Now
A M or am Śhiva m Drum
A HA or aha R ā ma ha Aha!
Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English

Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English
KA or ka Kavi Car
KHA or kha Khalu Mark -Him
GA or ga Gamana Gut
GHA or gha Ghata Ugh!
Ṅ A or ṅa Tura ṅ ga Ring
CHA or ca Chakra Chart
CHHA or cha Chhandas Branch
JA or ja Jagath Jug
JHA or jha Jhallari Fudge
NYA or nya Gnyana Knew
Ṭ A or ṭ Ṭ anka Top
ṬHA or ṭha Pāṭha Pothole
ḌA or da Ḍ amaruka Dog
Ḍ HA or ḍ ha Mūḍ ha Madhouse
Ṇ A or ṇ a Ga ṇ a Wander
THA or tha Thanu Health
THHA or thha Athha Theater
DHA or dha Dha śha This
DHHA or dhha Dhhana m Dha with an additional H sound
NA or na Namask ā raha Nut
PA or pa   Path ā ka Past
PHA or pha Phala m P with a H sound
BA or ba Bandhhu Ball
BHA or bha Bhadra Abhor
MA or ma Manas Money
YA or ya Yama Yummy
RA or ra Rajas Rub
LA or la Lath ā Lust
VA or WA, va /wa A śh va or A śhwa Water/Valour
ŚHA or śha Śhakthi Shutter
ṢHA or ṣ ha Ṣh a ṇ mukha Shunt
SA or sa Sarasvatī Sun
HA or ha Hari Hum
Ḷ A or ḷ a Ar āḷ a Bold
KṢHA or k ṣ ha Ak ṣh i Try to pronounce Ka, Sa & Ha – all at one time.
Extra Vowels in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada & Malayalam Scripts    
É or é Éṇi Angel
Ō or ō Ō m Ō M
ZHA Exclusive to Tamil & Malayalam Fold the tip of your tongue backwards and try to pronounce it with the aid of the audio button.
Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English


Name of the Temple

  • Śhrīśhailam.


  • It is on the right side of the River Kriṣhṇa in Karnūl District of Āndhra Pradeśh, South India.
How to reach there?
  • By Air : The closest airport to Śhrīśhailam is the airport in Haidherabādh, around 200 km. From the airport take the Śhrīśhailam Highway 5 heading south.
  • By Train : The nearest railway station is located in Markāpur, around 86 km from Śhrīśhailam. From the Markāpur railway station take the road heading north-west to reach Śhrīśhailam.
  • By Road: Śhrīśhailam is about 232 km from Haidherabādh.Śhrīśhailam can be reached through Bangaluru Haidherabādh Highway 44 and from Chennai through the National Highway 16.

Rulers/builders and Time Period

  • Epigraphically, evidence reveals that the history of Śhrīśhailam begins with the Śhāthavāhanas who were the first empire builders in South India.
  • The earliest known historical mention of the Hill - Śhrīśhailam, can be traced in Pulumāvis Nāsik inscription of 1st Century A.D.
  • The Śhāthavāhanas, the Ikṣhvākus, the Pallavas, the Viṣhṇukuṇḍins, the Chālukyas, the Kākathiyas, the Reddi Kings, the Vijayanagara Emperors and Chhathrapathi Śhivāji are among the famous emperors who worshipped God Mallikārjuna Swami.
  • Prathāparudhra of Kākathiya Dynasty strived for a lot for the improvements of this Kṣhethram and granted Paragaṇas for its maintenance.
  • Gaṇapathidheva has spent 12000 Golden Nāṇyas for the maintenance of the temple.
  • The period of Reddi Kings is the Golden Age of Śhrīśhailam though almost all rulers of the dynasty did celebrated service for this temple. In 14th Century Prolaya Vema Reddi of Reddi Dynasty constructed stepped path-way to Śhrīśhailam.
  • The Second Harihararāya of Vijayanagara Empire constructed the Mukhamanṭapam of Swāmi shrine and also a Gopuram on Southern Side of the temple.
  • In the 15th Century Sri Kriṣhṇadhevarāya Constructed the Rājagopuram on Eastern side and Sālumanṭapas on both sides of the temple.
  • The last Hindhu King who strove hard for the improvement of the temple is Chhatrapathi Śhivāji who constructed a Gopuram on northern side in the year 1667 A.D


  • The deities who reside in the temple of Śhrīśhailam are Mallikārjuna Swāmi and his wife Bhramarāmba. They are the incarnations of Lord Śhiva and his consort Pārvathi.
  • The Śhiva linga that is worshipped in the temple is believed to be one of the twelve Jyothirliṅgams that the country has.

Architecture Style

  • The temple, whose popular name is Śhrīparvatha, is bounded by a great fortress-like wall that is 20 ft high, 6 ft wide and 2120 ft in circumference. Built in 1520 AD, the wall has 3200 stones, each weighing over one ton, and is decorated with fine relief carvings displaying images from Hindu mythology.
  • A cluster of minor shrines within the temple enclosure include the Sahasra Liṅga, Panchapāṇḍava temples and Vaṭa Vrikṣha.
  • At Śhikharam, the highest of the Śhrīśhailam hills, is Śhikhareśhwara Swāmi, a temple dedicated to Lord Śhiva.
  • Another beautiful temple is Śhrī Gaṇapathi temple, dedicated to Lord Ganeśha. 
  • The sculptures in the temple are excellent. A total number of about one hundred and sixteen inscriptions can be found in and around the temple.

Other Special Features

  • Heroic legends from the Mahābhāratha and Rāmāyaṇa are sculpted in stone on the temple walls and the Mahābhāratha epic refers to Śhrīśhailam as Śhrīparvatha , the blessed hill .
  • You can hear the buzzing of a bee through a tiny hole in the Bhramarāmba temple, where Pārvathi, in the form of a bee, slew the demon Mahiṣhāsura.
  • The prominence of this Dhivya Kṣhethram is highlighted by the fact that while performing our daily household rituals we specify place of location of our existence with reference to Śhrīśhailam.
  • The unique feature of this kṣhetram is the combination of Jyothirliṅgam and Mahāśhakthi in one campus, which is very rare and only one of its kind.

Any Other/Remarks

  • A number of legends have grown round Śhrīśhailam and its principal deities. Among them the most significant one is that Parvatha, son of Silada Maharṣhi is said to have performed penance, pleased Śhiva and made him agree to live on his body. This Parvatha assumed the shape of big Hill Śhrīparvatha and Śhiva lived on its top as Mallikārjuna Swāmi. This celebrated mountain is also named as Siridhan, Srigiri, Sirigiri, Sriparvatha and Srināgam. It has been a popular centre of Śhaivite pilgrimage for centuries.
  • According to one story Chandrāvathi, the ruler of Chandraguptha Paṭṭaṇa situated near Śhrīśhailam on the opposite bank of the river Krishna ran away from her father who made amorous advances to her. She went up the hill and settled down there with few servants. One day she found that one of her cows standing above a natural rock formation resembling the Śhivaliṅga and shedding its milk over it. The princess in a dream was informed that the piece of the stone was a self-manifested Liṅga of God Mallikārjuna and took to worshipping it. This story is mentioned in the Skandha Purāṇa. Two sculptures of the Prakāra Wall of the temple also represent this story.
  • According to another story Śhrī, the daughter of a Riṣhi did penance, pleased Śhiva and got her name associated with the name of the Hill (Śhailam) which thereafter came to be known as Śhrīśhailam.

Special Reference to Performing Arts

  • Śhrīśhailam Temple has secured its name in several ancient texts and Purāṇas. The origins of this temple have been lost in antiquity.
  • The Skandha Purāṇa has a chapter called Śhrīśhaila Kāṇḍam dedicated to it, which points to the ancient origin. This is confirmed by the fact that saints of the past millennia have sung its praises.
  • It is said that Ādhi Śhankara visited this temple and at that time he composed his Śhivānanda Lahari.
  • It gained prominence in the twelfth century due to the Śharaṇa movement and Vachana Sāhithya headed by Basavaṇṇa. According to legend, one of the Śhrīśhailam caves is said to be the place where the most famous poet and social reformer Akka Mahādhevi achieved salvation.


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