Interior of Vastupala Tejapala Temple on Girnar Hill, near Junagadh.
Photographer: Sykes, D.H.
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of Vastupala Tejapala's Temple on Mount Girnar near Junagadh in Gujarat, from the Archaeological Survey of India, taken by D.H. Sykes in c.1869. Mount Girnar rises more than 900 m above the plain on the outskirts of Junagadh. It was an important pilgrimage centre since the 3rd century BC. The mountain is particularly sacred to the Jains but there are also Buddhist caves and several Hindu shrines. At a height of about 650 m there is a group of sixteen Jain sanctuaries, the largest dedicated to Neminatha. The temples were built from the 12th to the 15th centuries. The temple in this view is known as the Mallinatha Temple and dates to 1231 and later. It was erected by Vastupala and Tejapala, who also patronised a temple on Mount Abu, another Jain pilgrimage place. The temple consists of three sanctuaries opening off a columned mandapa or hall covered with corbelled domes typical of the Solanki style. The basement have elaborate mouldings and the outer walls are decorated with wall niches. The two side shrines have pedestals carved in the shape of the cosmic mountain, the Meru, with miniature figures and shrines. This view shows the domed ceiling of the interior decorated with flying figures.