Pattadakal monuments, Karnataka, sermon in the stones

The Chalukya dynasty (Indian royal dynasty, ruled a vast land in the  southern and central India between the 6th and the 12th centuries) and the rulers were instrumental in creating  some of the beautiful architectural marvels then. Pattadkal, a small town in Karnataka,  was once the second largest  city  and  is famous for its ancient Hindu (Shaivism) and Jain temples.  A  World Heritage Site recognised by the UNESCO, Pattadkal is  an important tourist center and is on the left bank of the Malaprabha River in Bagalakote. It is 22 km from Badami, 514 km from Bengaluru and  10 km from Aihole. The Pre-Chalukya historical and archaeological site Bachinagudda is also near the last site. 

Pattadakal was ahistorical and a holy location where Badami Chalukya kings were crowned during their reign.  Vijayaditya was the first ruler to be crowned here at "Pattadakisuvolal" at the start of the 7th century AD. 

The following forms the group of monuments:

01. Jain Narayana Temple -  

Pattadakal  Jain Narayana temple.

Above image: The Jain temple (called Jain Narayana temple), at Pattadakal, a UNESCO world heritage site in Karnataka, India, was constructed by either Rashtrakuta Dynasty King Amoghavarsha I or his successor Krishna II in the 9th century  .............

The Jaina Narayana temple located on the Pattadakal-Badami Road, follows the  the Dravidian style by the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta. The temple is replete with amazing  sculptures  of artistic excellence  and are believed to be dated from the 9th century. It was built either by  King Amoghavarsha I or his son Krishna II. It has a mukhamantapa (main hall), a navaranga, shukanasa and garbhagriha. The principle deity of the temple is Parshvanatha, the 23rd tirthankara of Jainism    

02. Virupaksha Temple:
Virupaksha Temple, Dravidian design.

It was built by queen Lokamahadevi (Trilokya mahadevi) in 745 AD to mark her husband's victory (Vikramaditya II) over the Pallavas of Kanchi. Among the temples here at Pattangal, this one is the grandest and most elegant one. Lingodbhava, Nataraja, Ravananugraha and Ugranarasimha. are richly sculptured.  The temple has a large prakara and  a four-pillared Nandi mantapa, that houses  a fine large stone bull, the mount of Shiva.

03. Sangameshwara Temple:

Pattadakal Sangameshwara Temple.en.wikipedia. org.
 It was built by Chalukya King Vijayaditya Satyashraya (696-733). Dravidian style of design is followed here as examplified by  the sanctum (garbagraha). The vimana has three storyes.
According to an inscription in Kannada dated 1162, it was built by the Early Chalukya King Vijayaditya and was named Vijayeshwara.

04. Chandrashekhara Temple:

It is a small temple adjacent to Sangameshwara Temple The sanctum has  a Shivalinga and a small hall. 

05, Mallikarjuna Temple:

 Built in Dravidian style is much similar to the Virupaksha temple.  It was built by Vikramadiyta's second queen Trilokyamahadevi in 745. This temple was addtionally built by  Rani Trailokya Mahadevi to commemorate the victory by Vikramaditya  over the Pallavas. The Mallikarjuna temple  with a 4 storeyed  vimana, a circular griva and shikhara  is said to have been built immediately after and close to the Virupaksha temple (the plan is very similar).

Pattadakal temples. en.wikipedia. org.
 Above image: Mallikarjuna and Kashi Vishwanatha temples at Pattadakal Group of monuments at Pattadakal Manjuanth Doddamani, Gajendragad / Hubli, Karnataka, India

06. Kashi Vishwanatha Temple:-

Pattadakal Kashi Vishwanatha temple. en.

It was built in Nagara style by the Rashtrakutas in the 8th century and was the last temple  to be built in early Chalukya style; only the sanctum and a passage are  left. The pillars of the inner passage, have beautifully engraved  female figures in high relief. The  sanctum has a unique rekha-nagara tower that was built in  the 8th century

07. Galaganatha Temple:

Pattadakal. Galaganatha Temple. en.wikipedia. org.

Galaganatha Temple was built in the Rekha Nagara Prasada style and has stone images of   Lord Shiva killing the demon Andhakasura. There is a linga in the sanctum which is surrounded by a circular path way. There are several niches in which one can see Kubera, Gajalakshmi, and others.The temple is built in the first half of 8th century.

08 &

09. Kadasiddheshwara and Jambulingeshwara  Temples:

Jambulinga Temple, Pattadakal.en.wikipedia. org

 Above image:  Jambulinga Temple, Pattadakal. This is practically the "twin" or the double of Kaddasimbeshvara Temple just to the north, although the Jambulinga doorway guardians are missing. 
The tower has  curving ribs decorated with horseshoe-shaped blind arches. On the front (east) face of the towe, there  is a large panel of Shiva dancing with Nandi and Parvati. A similar panel on 
the Kaddasimbeshvara tower is heavily damaged   ................

They belong to the 7th century, the former has a stone image of Shiva with a trisula in his hand. Both these temples are built in Nagara style. The Jambulinga temple is behind the Galaganatha temple  and it has a sanctum with a shukanasa and a navaranga. At the doorway of the shukanasa are idols of Shiva’s guards Nandi and Veerabhadra.  The outer wall niches of the sanctum have idols of Shiva (Lakulisha) and Vishnu.

10. Papanatha temple:

Papanatha temple in ,
 Above image:  The Papanatha temple in Pattadakal, is an early attempt by Badami Chalukya architects at fusing the south Indian dravida style with the north Indian nagara style and dates to around 680 CE.  ..........

Papanatha temple built in the nagara style initially, later followed the Dravidian style of design and dates back to 680. It appears to have been built in stages.  It is located to the south of the Virupaksha and has a portico, main hall, big antechamber and the sanctum with encircled path way/prakara. As common in many temple, on the sides of the doorway, there are sentinal idols - Nandi and Veerabhadra.The display of various  episodes from the epics Mahabharata and Ramayana in sculptural forms is unique  This temple shares similar features with the Navabrahma temples in Alampur, Andhra Pradesh, which were also built by Badami Chalukyas. The 16-pillared hall is rich in stone work fine figures of couples and carved figures of females. The ceiling has eye-catching  figures of Shiva-Parvathi with Vishnu and the gandharvas. On the wall in the NW side the fine stone carvings include, royal court and amorous couple. Figures of lion and elephant riders and Ramayana scenes adorn the north wall. The temple appears to have built in stages. The sanctum has a rekha-nagara tower. The temple appears to have been built in 680 AD.

Here, one can marvel at the fusion of Rekha, Nagara, Prasada and the Dravida Vimana style of architecture. Pattadakal, a centre of Chalukya art and architecture is known  for its temples and inscriptions that originated in Aihole around 450 AD.  Badami and Pattadakal villages, in Bagalakote district were the places where a distinctive  Western Chalukyan Architecture evolved, blending  the Indo-Aryan Nagara and Dravidian styles The oldest temple being Sangamesvara, constructed by Vijayaditya Satyasraya (AD 697-733). The other popular temples  are the Kadasiddhesvara, Jambulingeswara  and Galaganatha. The former two belonged to 7th century A.D. while the latter one built in the 8th century, following the style of Rekha, Nagara, and Prasada. 

The Kasivisvesvara temple boasts of early  Chalukyan style. The Mallikarjuna temple  was constructed by Rani Trilokya Mahadevi to celebrate the  victory over the Pallavas by Vikramaditya II. She also supported the construction of the famous  Virupaksha temple and the inspiration came from  the architecture of the Kailasanatha temple at Kanchipuram.

Pattadakal continued to be a major centre under the Rashtrakutas and the Kalyani Chalukyas. It was during the reign of Rashtrakuta ruler Krishna II (9th century A.D, the last temple was built at Pattadakal The temple is locally renowned as Jaina Narayana.

 Other monuments at Pattadakal:

Besides these temples, there are many shrines  dedicated to lord Shiva and it clearly points out the fact that this place was once a center of Shivaism. According to inscriptions,  the trident symbol on the stone pillar of the Virupaksha, Sangameshwara and Mallikarjuna temples, was inscribed by Jnana Shivacharya, native of Mrigathanikahara, on the north bank of the Ganges. It also states about the gift of land by him to the Vijayeshwara.