Ruins of Martund [Surya Temple]
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the ruined Surya Temple temple at Martand in Jammu and Kashmir, from the Edward Molyneux Collection: Album entitled 'Indian Photographs'. The name of the photographer is not recorded, however, this view was possibly taken by Baker & Burke. The Surya Temple was built under the king Lalitaditya (c. 724-60) of the Karkota dynasty in the 8th century, and considered the masterpiece of early-Kashmir temple style despite its ruinous conditions. It is situated on a high plateau overlooking the central Kashmir valley with the Himalayas in the distance. The temple combines indigenous and imported elements; the use of pilasters and trefoil arches display the influence of classical architecture, whereas the gabled roofs are characteristic of the western Himalayas. There are sculptured figure panels set in niches on the walls of the sanctuary and antechamber, now badly eroded. The temple stands at the end of a large courtyard surrounded by a colonnade of fluted classic columns. This is a view of the exterior of the temple with an Indian figure standing in the pedimented entrance.