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Hoysala Grandeur: A Snapshot

Part 1
The Hoysala symbol: A warrior piercing the chest of a mighty roaring lion

The Hoysala empire lasted for about four centuries, between 10th and 14th century AD. Malnad, being blessed with rich fertile soil, was (and continues to be) a flourishing agrarian economy. The Hoysala kings, apart from other things, are known for getting many temples constructed. These temples have a general characteristic design: a star-shaped platform on which the temple stands, walls adorned with ornately carved figurines of Gods, Goddesses, human beings and animals alike, walls with tiny star-shaped openings, richly carved ceilings, and the Hoysala symbol carved at various spots (as pictured above). 

This picture was shot at the Lakshmi Devi temple, at Doddagaddavalli, in Hassan district.
For some reason, the temples at Belur and Halebidu have gained much more prominence than the other equally beautiful temples scattered across Hassan district. No doubt, the temples at Belur and Halebidu are bigger than the others, but the quality of the stone work remains the same. In fact, since the other temples are frequented by very few tourists, the figurines have remained largely undamaged, the graffiti is minimum, and one can actually appreciate the facial expressions of the stone figures.

Over the last weekend, we took a small break to visit these fantastic sculptural beauties, and this will be the first of many posts of this series on Hoysala temples and the short Hassan trip in general.

Read also: To Hassan (Part 2)Chennakeshava Temple, Belur (Part 3)Inside the Chennakeshava Temple (Part 4)Chennakeshava Temple, the Flamboyant Walls (Part 5)The Old Town: Halebidu (Part 6)The Drive to Mosale (Part 7)Mosale banthu Mosale (Part 8)Lakshmi Devi Temple, Doddagaddavalli (Part 9)Wall Art at Doddagaddavalli (Part 10)


  1. Beautiful work of architect. nice shot.

    1. Thank you. The work is indeed beautiful.

  2. Love that pic man... it's amazing...

  3. Nice shot. Yes the other Hoysala temples are beautiful too.

    1. True. Lovely photos on your blog too.

  4. The Hoysala temples are a hidden wonder. All of them are just amazing

    1. Yea. Karnataka has so many such places, hidden away.

  5. Priyanka, your click in b&w is a 'classic' shot. Very nice. Hoysala temples are indeed amazing in their architecture and detailing.

    1. Thank you Bushra. In the coming posts, I'll make an attempt to write more on these small details :)


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