Pattadakal Group of Monuments – The precious heritage of India

Pattadakal Group of Monuments – The precious heritage of India

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Pattadakal is yet another charming mesmerizing and valuable heritage of India. Pattadakal Group of Monuments is situated on the banks of Malaprabha River in Bagalkot district, at a distance of about 17 km from Bijapur and 22 km from Badami City, Karnataka India. This beautiful historic site is also a renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Pattadakal Group of Monuments includes a total of 10 temples (Hindu and Jain temples). Pattadakal Group of Monuments includes 1 Jain sanctuary and Nine Hindu temples. 4 temples of this complex are built in Dravidian style, 4 in Nagar style, and the rest of mixed style. These monuments are the representation of the rich cultural heritage of India and hence are priceless. Due to its significance it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1987.

Temples of Pattadakal Group of Monuments

  1. Jambulingeshwara Temple
  2. Galaganatha Temple
  3. Chandrashekhar Temple
  4. Sangameshwara Temple
  5. Kashi Vishwanath Temple
  6. Malkarjun Temple
  7. Virupaksha Temple
  8. Papantha Temple
  9. Jain Narayana Temple
  10. Kadasiddheshwara Temple

These monuments also stand as testimony to religious tolerance that privileged in the region.  If all of these monuments have one thing in common that will be their marvellous architecture. These monuments are built in Dravida, Vimana, Rekha, Nagara and Prasada style of architectures.

History of Pattadakal Group of Monuments

Pattadakal Group of Monuments is assigned to Chalukyan dynasty’s reign 7th – 8th century. From the inscription found in the temple complex, it is clear that in the past this site was famous with different names like Pattada, Raktapura, and Kisuvolal. In literary works of 1540, this place is mentioned as Pattashilapura and Hammirapura.

The monuments of Pattadkal are no less than masterpieces this also reflects upon the fact that fields such as art, Literature, Architecture etc received a generous amount of patronage from the rulers in that era.  

Pattadakal Group of Monuments is representation of the time when eclectic art was at its zenith and was beautifully incorporated into architecture. The architectural style used in these monuments beautifully amalgamates elements from both North and South India

Out of 10 temples, 8 are situated on one campus. Two temples located Badami namely Virupaksh and Banashankari are major attractions. Apart from this Jambulinga Temple, Jain temples, Malikarjuna temple, Papanatha etc are prominent structures of the complex.  

These monuments stand as an example of architectural excellence of that era. From looking at the intricate work on these structures one can easily imagine the kind of skills that extremely talented craftsmen of that time had. These monuments truly stand as a reminder of various historic events.

Description of Pattadakal Group of Monuments

The outer walls of these temples are adorned with carved images of Gods and Goddesses. Various elements of temple’s architecture depict episodes from Hindu religious texts such as Mahabharata, Panchatantra, Ramayana etc. 

Virupaksha Temple

of the Pattadakal Group of Monuments holds a significant place as per importance. This temple was built by the wife of King Vikramaditya II, Queen Lokamahadevi in 740-745 AD to commemorate the victory of the King over Pallava dynasty of Kanchi 

Sangameshwara Temple

 is the oldest temple of the complex. It was built between the years 697 AD to 733 AD. This temple was never completed, but its beauty even in an incomplete state does not fail to woo the onlookers.

Jambulinga Temple

 of the complex houses a beautiful dancing statue of Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati along with a statue of Nandi the Bull. This temple house a Shiva Lingam in its sanctum. The façade of the temple has horseshoe projected.             

Chandrashekhar Temple:

 This temple is situated near  Sangameshwara temple. It is much simpler and smaller as compared to other structures of the complex. In the sanctum of this temple a shiva Lingam is housed on a platform. The sanctum of the Garbh Girha of this temple has devakosta on both its sides. The temple hall is adorned with carved Shakhas.

Malikarjuna Temple:

 This temple was built in 745 AD by Queen Trilokyamahadevi who was the second wife of King Vikranaditya. This temple like Virupaksha temple was also built  to commemorate king’s victory over Pallavas of Kaanchi. The built of this temple is similar to that of Virupaksh temple. This temple incorporates some of themost stunning elements of Darividian style of architecture. This temple houses some gorgeous structures such as statue of Lord Narsimha Killing Hirnyakashyipu, idols of two females.

Kashi Vishwanath Temple:

 This Nagara style temple was built by Rashtrakutas in early 8th century. Today only some parts of this temple remain. Out of wat is remaining includes rekhangara tower and a passage which can be seen in the sanctum of the temple. On the passage pillars one can see tasteful carvings of female inscribed, its ceiling has representation of Somaskanda

Galganatha Temple:

This temple is assigned to early 8th century. This temle is mix of Nagara, Rekha and Prasada styles of architrecture. Like all other temple of this complex this temple is also dedicated to lord Shiva. The sanctum of this temple houses a Shiva Lingam, navaranga and Shukasana. There are idols of Shiva killing a demon, Kubera, Gjalakshmi and many other Gods and Goddesses. 

Kadasiddheswara Temple:

 This temple is estimated to be built in mid 7th century. The temple is built on a raised plinth. It has a Shiva Linga in its Grabha Griha or sanctum. This beautiful temple is built in Rekha Nagara style of architecture. This temple looks a lot like Jambulinga temple henece these two are called twin temple. You will find many interesting features such as beautiful carvings, sculptures etc in this temple.

Jain temple:

 Among these 10 valuable structure this is the only Jain temple of the complex. Also known as Jain Narayana temple this beautiful temple is built in Darvidian style of architecture. The temple includes Shukansa, navaranga, Garbh Griha and mukhamandapa. This temple is assumed to either have been built by King Amoghavarsha or his son Krishna II in 9th century.

Papanatha Temple: 

This temple was built around 680 AD. Its construction began in Nagara style of, later completed with Vesara and Darividian style. This temple has numerous idols depicting secens from Hindu mythological texts such as Ramayana and Mahabharta.  In the inner hall of the temple there are idols of Virabhadra and Nandi. The main of the temple has elaborately adorned pillars with stunning carvings of couples and females.

The ceiling of the shrine bears mesmerizing sculptures of Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati, and Lord Vishnu. The outer walls of the temple are adorned with exquisite carvings of the scenes from Mahabharata and images of lions and elephant riders.


Ref 1

Ref 2

Ref 3

Ref 4

Ref 5

Ref 6

Also read Hoysaleswara TempleMysore PalaceKittur FortHampiSomeshwara Temple, Durga Temple Aihole

Leave a Reply