World Heritage Sites
- Group of Monuments at Pattadakal (1987), Karnataka
rulers were not only empire builders, but great patrons of art whose encouragement
prompted the artists and craftsmen to experiment and innovate in different
architectural styles and giving it a new dimension. It is in their period
that transition from rock-cut medium to structural temples took place.
in Bijapur district of Karnataka was not only popular for Chalukyan architectural
activities but also a holy place for royal coronation, 'Pattadakisuvolal'.
Temples constructed here mark the blending of the Rekha, Nagara, Prasada
and the Dravida Vimana styles of temple building.
The oldest temple
at Pattadakal is Sangamesvara built by Vijayaditya Satyasraya (AD 697-733).
The other notable temples at Pattadakal are the Kadasiddhesvara, Jambulingeswara
both attributed to 7th century A.D. while Galaganatha temple was built
a century later in the style of rekha nagara prasada. The Kasivisvesvara
temple was the last to be built in early Chalukyan style. The Mallikarjuna
temple was constructed by Rani Trilokyamahadevi to celebrate the victory
over the Pallavas by Vikramaditya II. She is also credited to have built
the Virupaksha temple influenced by the architecture of the Kailasanatha
temple at Kanchipuram. The Virupaksha temple later served as a model for
the Rashtrakuta ruler Krishna I (757 -783 AD) to carve out the great Kailasa
However, the last
addition at Pattadakal was made during the reign of Rashtrakuta ruler
Krishna II of the 9th century AD in form of a Jaina temple, locally famous
as Jaina Narayana, with its two lower storeys functional.
sculptural art of the early Chalukyas is characterised by grace and delicate
details. The ceiling panels of the navagrahas, dikpalas, the dancing Nataraja,
the wall niches containing Lingodbhava, Ardhanarisvara, Tripurari, Varahavishnu,
Trivikrama bear ample testimony to the sculptor's skill as well as the
cult worship in vogue. The narrative relief illustrating certain episodes
from the Ramayana, Mahabharata, Bhagavata and Panchatantra fitted well
with these grand religious edifices.
Virupaksha and Mallikarjuna temples at Pattadakkal exhibit to a large
degree the southerly elements in their vimanas, as crystallized in the
contemporary Pallava temples.
the earliest of the three, built by Chalukya Vijayaditya (697-733), is
nearer the Pallava form in that it has no sukanasika, while the other
two, which possess this, are the earliest of the Chalukyan type and its
derivatives possessing this architectural member, as also does the Kailasa
at Ellora. Both the Sangamesvara and the larger Virupaksha are similar
to each other in being square on plan from the base to sikhara. The Virupaksha,
built by the queen of Vikramaditya II (733-46), is the earliest dated
temple with the sukanasika, being closely followed by the Mallikarjuna,
built by another queen of the same king.
The main vimana of
the Sangamesvara is of three storeys. The lowermost storey is surrounded
by two walls, the inner and outer, the second storey being an upward projection
of the inner wall, while the outer wall encloses the covered circumambulatory
round the sanctum.
Virupaksha is a large complex consisting of a tall vimana with axial mandapas
and peripheral sub-shrines round the court, enclosed by a wall with gopura-entrances
in front and behind, all designed and completed at one time. As such,
this is the earliest extant temple-complex in the Chalukyan series. The
massive gopuras are also the earliest. The compound-wall of the complex,
following the plan of the group itself, has on its coping kuta and said-heads,
suggestive of a derivation from the Shore-temple at Mahabalipuram-a device
which gives the impression of a lower storey when viewed from a distance.
built immediately after and close to the Virupaksha, is a smaller temple
with a four-storeyed vimana with a circular griva and sikhara. It has
more or less a similar plan.
Open from sunrise to sunset
UNESCO Heritage Monuments in India