Old gateway of the Chennakeshvara Temple, Belur
Photographer: Dixon, Henry
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of an old gateway with sculptured figures above the lintel from the Chennakeshava Temple from the Archaeological Survey of India Collections: India Office Series (volume 24: 'a' numbers), taken by Henry Dixon in the 1860s. The Chennakeshava Temple was built during the early Hoysala period in 1117 and is one of the masterpieces of that time. The temple is entirely built of grey-green chlorite and consists of a sanctuary with minor shrines on three sides and a columned mandapa, raised on a platform. It has a star-shaped plan which creates multiple projections. Its superstructure, which belonged to the Nagara style of architecture, is now lost. The sculptural wealth of this temple is extraordinary and represents architectural elements and figural carvings depicting different aspects of Vishnu.