Kedareshwara Temple, Halebidu

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Kedareshwara Temple
Hindu temple (Hoysala style)
Kedareshwara Temple, 1173–1219
Kedareshwara Temple, 1173–1219
Country India
DistrictHassan District
 • OfficialKannada
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
ISO 3166 codeIN-KA
Rear view of the Kedraeshwara temple at Halebidu

Kedareshwara Temple (also spelt "Kedaresvara" or "Kedareshvara") is a Hoysala era construction in the historically important town of Halebidu, in the Hassan district of Karnataka state, India. It is located a short distance away from the famous Hoysaleswara Temple. The temple was constructed by Hoysala King Veera Ballala II (r. 1173–1220 A.D.) and his Queen Ketaladevi, and the main deity is Ishwara (another name for the Hindu god Shiva). The temple is protected as a monument of national importance by the Archaeological Survey of India.[1][2]

Temple plan[edit]

Stellate plan of shrine outer wall in the Kedareshwara temple at Halebidu

According to art historian Adam Hardy, the temple was constructed before 1219 A.D and is constructed with Soap stone. The usage of Soap stone was first popularised by the Western Chalukyas before it became standard with the Hoysala architects of the 12th and 13th centuries.[3] The temple stands on the platform called jagati which is typically five to six feet in height and which can be reached by a flight of steps. According to historian Kamath, this is a Hoysala innovation. Hoysala temples normally don't provide a path for circumambulation (pradakshinapatha) around the inner sanctum (garbhagriha). However, the platform provides this convenience in addition to giving the onlooker a good view of the wall relief and sculptures.[4] The outlay of the main shrine (Vimana) is star-shaped (stellate) with two smaller shrines that have perforated windows (called Jali, literally, "sieve") on the sides. According to the art historian Gerard Foekema, star-shaped or "staggered square" (or cross in square) temple plans are quite common among Hoysala constructions creating multiple projections and recesses in the outer walls. In these projections, the Hoysala architects created repetitive decorative sculptures and reliefs called "architectural articulation".[5][6][7]

View of central domical bay ceiling supported by lathe turned pillars in the mantapa in the Kedareshwara temple at Halebidu
Wall panel relief of deities in the Kedareshwara temple at Halebidu

Since the temple has three shrines, it qualifies as a trikuta, a three shrined structure. Often in trikutas, only the central shrine has a tower while the lateral shrines are virtually hidden behind the thick outer walls and appear to be a part of the hall itself.[8] Despite being a Shaiva temple (related to god Shiva) it is well known for its friezes and panel relief that bare depictions from both the Shaiva and Vaishnava (related to the god Vishnu) legend. The three sanctums are connected to a "staggered square" (indented) central hall (mahamantapa) by individual vestibules called sukanasi. A porch connects the central hall to the platform.[9] The base of the temple wall (adhisthana) around the common hall and the two lateral shrines consist of mouldings, each of which is treated with friezes in relief that depict animals and episodes from the Hindu lore (purana). Historian Kamath calls this "horizontal treatment".[10] The image of the deity of worship is missing in all three sanctums and the superstructure over all three shrines are lost. Some noteworthy pieces of sculpture worthy of mention are the dancing Bhairava (a form of Shiva), Govardhana (the god Krishna lifting a mountain), the god Vishnu as Varadaraja, and a huntress.[11]


  1. ^ *"Alphabetical List of Monuments – Karnataka -Bangalore, Bangalore Circle, Karnataka". Archaeological Survey of India, Government of India. Indira Gandhi National Center for the Arts. Retrieved 12 April 2013.
  2. ^ "Kedaresvara Temple". Archaeological Survey of India, Bengaluru Circle. ASI Bengaluru Circle. Retrieved 12 April 2013.
  3. ^ Foekema (1996), p.25
  4. ^ Foekema (1996), p.21
  5. ^ Hardy (1995), p.329
  6. ^ Kamath (2001), p. 115, p.136
  7. ^ Foekema (1996), p.25
  8. ^ "Kedaresvara Temple". Archaeological Survey of India, Bengaluru Circle. ASI Bengaluru Circle. Retrieved 12 April 2013.
  9. ^ Kamath (2001), p.134
  10. ^ "Kedaresvara Temple". Archaeological Survey of India, Bengaluru Circle. ASI Bengaluru Circle. Retrieved 12 April 2013.



External links[edit]