General view of the Parsvanatha Temple, Bilgi
Photographer: Cousens, Henry
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Parshvanatha temple, Bilgi taken by Henry Cousens sometime in the 1880s or 1890s. Bilgi is located in the modern state of Karnataka, thirteen kilometres from the town of Siddapur. It was a small hamlet when Cousens visited, surrounded by fertile farmland excellent for the cultivation of supari, peppervine and cardamon. The town is most famous for it's status as the capital for the Odeyas of Bilgi in the sixteenth century. Bilgi is home to three temples, all large in size and built in a plain manner. The Parshvanatha temple is the most impressive of these and has been described by Cousens at the time this photograph was taken : "The shrine walls are formed of slabs the whole height of the walls, with square pillars at the corners and in the middle to give them support. The upper part of the walls of the mandapa are formed in the same way set on a carved screen wall." The outer mandapa has four round black stone pillars and there is a small shrine at each side of this mandapa. It has a flat roof supported by carved basalt pillars.