Views in Mysore. Ruined temple of Hallabeed [Hoysalesvara Temple, Halebid]. Detail of carving on west face 212630
Photographer: Lyon, Edmund David
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph from an album of 40 albumen prints by Edmund David Lyon. Halebid is a site in the Hassan district of Karnataka, once famous as Dwarasamudra, the capital of the Hoysalas, from the 12th to the 14th centuries. The Hoysaleshvara temple in Halebid dates from the mid-12th century and represents the apogee of the Hoysala style of architecture, richly decorated with finely wrought carving in the grey-green chloritic schist of the region. The temple was sacred to Shiva and consists of twin structures that are linked and form a complex with two sanctuaries and two pillared halls or mandapas built on a stepped plan. This is a view of the sculptures and the decorative friezes on the basement of the wall of the temple about which Lyon wrote in his 'Notes to Accompany a Series of Photographs Prepared to Illustrate the Ancient Architecture of Southern India' (Marion & Co., London, 1870), edited by James Fergusson, 'One of the subjects is Shiva seated on the bull Nundi, with his wife Parvati on his knee. The figure on his left is the many-headed giant Ravana, King of Ceylon, supporting Kailasa, the Hindu Olympus; a punishment to which he was condemned, after he had been defeated by Rama, for his abduction of Sita.'