Temple Architecture

Old Temple from the North West, Gop

Pictured here are the ruins of an old temple in Gop, Gujarat, estimated to date to the 6th century, Maitraka period. Located in Jamnagar district, Gop was one of several historic sites in Kathiawar and Kutch examined by British archaeologist James Burgess between 1874-75. The shrine, standing about 23 feet high, may be the oldest… Read more »

Detached building in the Court, Belloor (Chennakeshava Temple, Belur)

This photograph from the ‘Architecture in Dharwar and Mysore’ was taken by  Dr. A.C.B.Neill in 1856. Pictured are the incomplete facets of the adhisthana (temple base) and the bhitti (wall) of the temple.  The Chennakeshava Temple complex in Belur consists of several smaller shrines and monuments constructed by several kings over the centuries. According to James Fergusson, it was… Read more »

Detail, Temple at Belloor (Chennakeshava Temple, Belur)

This photograph from the ‘Architecture in Dharwar and Mysore’ was taken by  Dr. A.C.B.Neill in 1856. Pictured here is the outer wall of the pillared hall of the temple.  The photographer has finely captured the carved rows and niches of the adhisthana (temple base), jali vatayana (netted wall), and the pilasters on the bhitti (body/wall) of the temple. The adhisthana (temple… Read more »

Temple, Belloor (Chennakeshava Temple, Belur)

This photograph from the ‘Architecture in Dharwar and Mysore’ was taken by  Dr. A.C.B.Neill in 1856.  The temple identified here is the Chennakeshava temple in Belur, Karnataka. The photograph shows the entrance to the temple flanked by small subordinating shrines on either side of the stairway. The topmost structure consists of five devakoshtas (niches) with divinities inside. … Read more »

Jain Temple, Guduk (Doddabasappa Temple, Gadag)

This photograph from the ‘Architecture in Dharwar and Mysore’ was taken by photographer Dr. William Henry Pigou in 1856. The temple identified here is the Chalukyan Doddabasappa temple built in the 12th century and is located 20kms away from Gadag city in Karnataka.  Incorrectly captioned as a Jain temple by the photographer/publisher, the temple is dedicated… Read more »

Shyam Rai Temple, Bishnupur

This picture shows the Shyam Rai Temple, regarded as a structural beauty amongst the Bishnupur Temple Complex in West Bengal. It was built during the reign of Raghunath Singha (1626 – 1656), a Malla King who is recognised to be a patron of art and architecture. The temple is a pancharatha temple with one main… Read more »

Great Pagoda of the Brihadishwara Temple, Tanjore

The Brihadishwara Temple at Thanjavur marks the acme of the Southern Temple Architecture, in magnitude, design, technique, and art. This Great Temple, built between AD 1003 to 1010, is also called the Rajarajeshvara after its builder Rajaraja I, the great Chola Ruler. The Temple complex consists of various subsidiary shrines of different deities, and an… Read more »

The Black Pagoda, or, Sun Temple, Konark

This photograph depicts the before-restoration ruins of the Sun temple at Konark, in Orissa. Once famous as the Black Pagoda, for the temple resembles the chariot of the Sun God, with 12 wheels and seven horses that represent the number of months in a year/zodiac signs and days in the week. It was built by… Read more »

Sacred Space

The earliest temple was a humble place that served as a conduit between hope and whatever higher power held human fates in its hand. As faith in this unseen hand grew, so did the edifice that gathered the hopeful. Today, temples are among the richest repositories of our nation’s artistic, social and cultural legacies. Join… Read more »