General view from the south-west of the Rangaswami Temple, Bankapur
Photographer: Cousens, Henry
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Rangaswami Temple at Bankapur, taken by Henry Cousens in the 1880s. This Chalukya temple, also called Arvattukambada or temple of the sixty columns, is situated to the west of the old fort at Bankapur in modern day Karnataka. Bankapur was important strategically to Vijayanagara kings as the area around it was rich in resources. The town was lost to the forces of the Bijapur sultanate in the 15th century, and the temple appears to have undergone a number of changes at this point. Cousens reports that, "The great pillared hall was converted into a mosque when the fort was held by a Bijapur garrison." The two windows decorated with arabesque motifs on each side of the porch between the inner and outer halls were damaged by the forces of Bijapur. The pillars of the hall are of dark-grey stone turned by a lathe.