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Hullabeed. The Great Temple. Portion of South-west front of antechamber of northern vimana. [Hoysaleshwara Temple, Halebid.]

Hullabeed. The Great Temple. Portion of South-west front of antechamber of northern vimana. [Hoysaleshwara Temple, Halebid.]

Photographer: Neill, Andrew Charles Brisbane

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1856

Shelfmark: Photo 965/1(18)

Item number: 965118

Genre: Photograph

Photograph with a close view of a portion of the façade of the Hoysaleshwara Temple at Halebid in Karnataka, taken by William Henry Pigou in c. 1855, from 'Architecture in Dharwar and Mysore'. Halebid (ancient Dwarasamudra), a small town in the Hassan district, was once the capital of the Hoysala dynasty of the southern Deccan which flourished from the 12th to the 14th century. Invasions by armies of the Delhi Sultanate led to its decline by the mid-14th century. The Hoysalas were prolific temple builders and the site is renowned for the remnants of architecture and sculpture fashioned out of the chloritic schist in the region. The most famous monument here is the Hoysaleshwara temple dedicated to Shiva as Nataraja, the Cosmic Dancer, which was built for Ketamalla, an official of Vishnuvardhana (ruled c. 1108-42). It is an exemplar of the lavish Hoysala style and is encrusted with continuous bands of sculpture, unsurpassed in its detail and vibrancy. A typical plan of a temple of the period consists of the sanctuary or vimana attached by an antechamber (antarala) to a hall (mandapa). The Hoysaleshwara, placed on a high platform, is twin-shrined or dvikuta, with each linked shrine preceded by a Nandi pavilion. This is a close view of the façade of the antechamber of the northern sanctuary, decorated with friezes of animals and sculpture panels of various divinities attended by musicians and maidens which are set on the outer wall projections.

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