#VirupakshaTemple, #Pattadakal, #Karnataka, #India

The epigraphy reveals this to have been built by Queen Loka Mahadevi (originally named as Lokeswara) after the successful military campaigns of King Vikramaditya II against the #Pallavas (4th-9th centuries CE).
In ground plan it resembles the Kailasnatha #temple of Kanchipuram, citadel of the Pallavas, but in stone it is a realisation of the fully mature Early #Chalukyan architecture in all its glory.
A square garbha griha, with an ambulatory path surrounding it, is connected to the antarala. Two small shrines are laterally placed to the antarala, one for #Ganesha and the other for #Mahisasurmardini. Three porches from the east, north and south open up to an expansive mandapa.
Further east, a separate Nandi mandapa is placed on a plinth. The whole temple is surrounded by prakara (enclosure) walls that are provided with subsidiary shrines on its inner side. Only a handful of these remains out of the original 32.
The magnificently built Dravida shikhara with a well-preserved sukanasa ('nose,' arched projection) on the front is one of the hallmarks of the temple. The superstructure is three-storied and topped by a four-sided amalaka with a Kalash at its final.
Pattadakal means ‘coronation stone’ and bears testimony to the later phase of evolution of the distinctive Early Chalukyan architecture. The gestation phase of this growth which took place in Aihole, Badami (the ancient capital), Alampur, and Mahakuta finds its climax here.
It is in the last few decades, during the successive reigns of Vijayaditya (696-733 CE), Vikramaditya II (733-746 CE) and Kirtivarman II (746-753 CE), that several temples were gradually constructed in this fertile valley.
A #Jain shrine was constructed much later, after the collapse of the empire by their successor #RashtrakutaDynasty (8th-10th centuries CE) in the 9th century CE

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