Chennakesava temple :
I am an ardent admirer of ancient history . The temples, churches, mosques, monuments, palaces, pillars are all silent witnesses of our eventful past. If you listen closely you might as well hear them, telling you stories of lives that passed by, of dynasties which ruled, of wars that destroyed and also of nature’s fit of pique.
The Chennakesava temple was built by King Vishnuvardhana of the Hoysala dynasty in 1117 A.D. You can read more about the temple here 🙂 .
Within the complex, the Chennakesava temple is at the centre, facing east, and is flanked by the Kappe Channigraya temple on its right, and a small Sowmyanayaki (form of the goddess Lakshmi) temple set slightly back. On its left, also set slightly back is the Ranganayaki temple.
This is the Rayagopura or the superstructure crowning the main entrance built during the times of the Vijayanagara Empire .
Two pillars exist here – the Garuda (eagle) sthambha (pillar) facing the main entrance and the Deepa (lamp) sthambha .
The material used for construction of the temple is chloritic schist or soapstone on which beautiful detailing has been done.
The main temple has three entrances and their doorways have decorated sculptures called dwarpalakas ( doorkeepers ) adorning them on either side. There are also miniature shrines with Bhumija (tower or spire on top) styled superstructure at the entrances as shown in the above picture.
The mantapa (hall) is one of the main attractions of Chennakesava temple. Among the 48 ornate lathe turned pillars Narasimha pillar ( unfortunately which I couldn’t click ) is the most popular along with the four pillars bearing madanikas (celestial damsels).
The main temple with smaller shrines at the backdrop.
Backside of the temple.
PS 1: I hope you guys enjoyed my amateur tour of Chennakesava temple, Belur. I am extremely sorry for the scarcity of images because while taking these pictures little did I know that they would find special mention in this yet to be born blog of mine.
PS 2: Info bytes courtesy WIKI WIKI WIKI . 😀 Sorry guys my historical knowledge isn’t that great!