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Incredible India: Discovering the Hoysala Art Temples Of Mandya, Karnataka!

Have you ever wondered what the Hoysala Architecture looks like? For many years, you may have been exploring famous Indian architectural styles such as Mughal, Dravidian ,Vijayanagara, etc. One of its unique kind of Indian-born style is the Hoysala architecture.

Let us delve into the examples of the impressive temples in the Mandya region.

5 Indian-Born Style Hoysala Art Temple In Mandya

Mallikarjuna Temple

Mandya district has the most beautiful temples after Hassan district. Located in basaralu, a small village on the road from Mandya to Nagamangala, mallikarjuna temple is not very famous. As I have seen abroad, there is a practice of preserving and proudly adorning monuments that are small and not very important. Though we have monuments with magnificent sculptural beauty, they are on the verge of destruction due to their negligence and indifference towards them.

Tourism will also be strengthened when such historical places are developed. All this is not unknown to governments. But the existing monuments are also being destroyed due to lack of action. It is said that the temple was built by a general named Harihara in 1234 CE during the reign of Narasimha II. The Mallikarjuna Linga here is said to have been brought from far away Srisailam. In fact, this temple at Basaral is in better condition than the other temples of the Hoysalas.

The faces of the idol remain the same. The temple stands on a three-foot-high star-shaped verandah. The outer wall idols with sculptures of Shiva, Vishnu, Varaha, Arjuna, Kartikeya, Brahma, instrumentalists of various instruments, etc., are attractive. This is the Trikuta Temple. Mallikarjuna Shivalinga is the main deity, while the Sun and Naga sculptures as a rare worship are installed in another sanctum sanctorum.

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Mallikarjuna temple in mandya

Ananthapadmanabha Temple

There are two Hoysala temples at Budanur in Mandya district. One of them is the Ananthapadmanabha temple belonging to the Vaishnava tradition and the other is the Kashi Vishweshwara temple of the Saiva tradition. It is clear to those who have seen many of their temples that the kings who built them had no distinction between Saiva and Vaishnava. Now both these temples are in a very bad shape and recently the Ananthapadmanabha temple has been renovated.

Ballala III of the Hoysalas built agraharas and temples in this village. The temple, which dates back to the 13th century, has an inscription written by Narasimha III in the south-east corner of the Navaranga. The Ananthapadmanabha temple is situated on a three-foot-high verandah facing east. It has sanctum sanctorum, antaraala, navaranga and mukhamantapa. The five-feet tall idol of Anantha Padmanabha has Sridevi and Bhoodevi on the left and right. There are pictures of Gajalakshmi in the lalata images. Not many carvings are seen on the inside. The outer wall is also simple. It has a simple Dravidian style peak. There is also sukanasi. There are four pillars made of rotating machine and on the roof there is a simple Bhuvaneswari shaped like padmadala.

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Ananthapadmanabha Temple in mandya

Kashi Vishwanatha Temple

The small temple at Boodanuru is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This is popularly known as Kashi Vishwanatha temple. After renovation works carried out recently, now the temple is looking stable. Built on a raised platform, this temple is of medium size, with Shikhara and Shukanasi. Emblem on Shukanasi is not visible now. Outer walls are made of simple straight line like structures with less decoration.

But inner Navarang has beautiful sculptures of eight Dikplalakas. 4 Devakoshtas had once the statues of Ganesha, Shanumkha and Shiva. Now they are missing. Nandi found in front of Shivalinga had a wonderful pair of ears. They could have been removed and fixed by using screw thread like carvings. But now they being stolen only empty hole can be seen.

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Kashi vishwanatha temple in mandya

Someshwara Temple

The Someshwara Temple, located to the north-east of the Lakshminarasimha temple, has been neglected and is on the path of decline. But the Lakshminarasimha temple in the same village is in good condition. It belongs to the Department of Religious Endowments. Let us now look at the fate of the Ishwara temple here, as well as its historicity. It is situated on the edge of the road leading to Bettalli. The Ekakuta temple was known as Someshwara Temple on a high ground on the banks of a lake nearby.

The temple has a traditional garbhagriha, antarala and navaranga system. The doors of the five branches and the vithanas are made up of simple lotus structures. There are signs that navaranga mantapa was added to it during the vijayanagara period. Some of the pictures here are from about six years ago. Even now, their situation does not seem to have changed. In some of the recent pictures too, more vines can be seen growing thicker. It may have been an agrahara at one time. All the surviving sculptures related to this temple have been destroyed. The sculptures of Nandi and Ganapana are kept in the nearby Basavanna temple. The Lakshmi Narasimha Temple is located nearby under the control of the Muzrai Department. But no one seems to care about this temple. Looking at one of the devakoshtas that now survive in this temple, it can be inferred that in the past, there were decorative sculptures on its outer wall.

Now that they have been destroyed or stolen, only the inner layer remains. The parts that are no longer visible may have been buried in the ground. With scientific excavation, it is possible to revive this temple. This can only be done with the cooperation of the Archaeological Survey of India and the locals. The details of the quarrel between the Dudda and Basaras are recorded in folk tales.

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Someshwara temple in madya

Lakshminarsimha Temple

On the way from Mandya city to Melukote, there is Dudda village after Shivalli. Though it looks like an ordinary village on the surface, its historicity is evident from the lakshminarasimha temple inside the village. The temple is now under muzrai administration. It may have been an agrahara during the Hoysala period. From the exterior of the temple and some of the sculptures here, it appears to have been built in the 12th-13th century.

Today, most of the temple has been renovated and the original style of the temple has disappeared. Only the sanctum sanctorum is in its original form, as can be seen from the use of sandstones. The structures in front of it seem to have been built during the Vijayanagara period. The Narasimha idol here is in a calm form. It is four and a half feet high. Images of Dasavatara are depicted in Prabhavali. Lakshmi is shown wearing an amritkalash on her left hand. The speciality of this sculpture is that one eye of Lakshmi is seen looking at Lord Narasimha while the other eye is seen watching the devotees.

The temple is situated on a high ground and is also known as Nadukeri Narasimha. The devotees who are the cultivators of this temple participate in the kalyanotsavam programmes held in the month of June every year. Like many Hoysala temples, this temple also lacks information. If people visiting the nearby Melukote are provided with proper information about the temples here, it will also attract tourists.

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Lakshminarsimha temple in mandya

Also Read;

Bateshwar Group Of Temples, Morena, M.P. – India (thearchspace.com)

Spirituality And Architecture (thearchspace.com)

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