Ruined mandapa at the Narasimha Temple, Ahobilam
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of a mandapa at the Narasimha Temple at Ahobilam in Andhra Pradesh, taken by an unknown photographer in the 1870s, from the Archaeological Survey of India Collections. Ahobilam is an important Vaishnava pilgrimage site and the principal place of worship of Narasimha, the lion-man incarnation of Vishnu. The Narasimha Temple complex has two parts; the temple in this view is situated in the town, lower Abobilam. It was built in the mid-16th century under the Vijayanagara rulers. The temple complex consists of nine shrines dedicated to the nine different forms of Narasimha. This is a view of a detached, open-sided mandapa, with a stepped tank in the foreground. This appears to be the tank illustrated in D.Ramaswamy Ayyangar, 'A descriptive history of the forgotten shrines of Ahobilam' (Walajabad, 1916,), p.16, and entitled 'Sannidhi Koneru - Lower Ahobilam.' Here he wrote, 'This is a big pushkarini constructed on the plan of the Triplicane tank with steps all round. All round the tank you have a chain of mantapams...The tank is always dry. A deep well is dug within the tank...The construction of this tank is ascribed to Krishnadevaraya.'