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Kolaramma Temple, Kolar

LOCALITY: Kolar (Lat. 13° 07' N; Long. 78° 12' E)

The Kolaramma temple was in existence at least from the time of the Cholas as known from an epigraph of the reign of Rajaraja mentioning some grants to the temple and another dated 1030 AD referring to the construction of a mandapa by Rajendra Chola I. The plan of the temple indicates two shrines. The main shrine of Kolaramma faces east whereas the larger shrine faces north. Both the temples share a common mandapa. The treatment of walls with slender pilasters of the main shrine and a large image of Chamunda flanked by Virabhadra and Ganapati are noteworthy. The garbhagriha, adhisthana mouldings and the pilastered wall are covered with numerous inscriptions in Tamil characters. Facing east, the temple has an austere mahadvara ornamented with Gajalakshmi in green stone on the lintel while its pillars inside have sculptured figures on all sides. The inner mahadvara is connected to a prakara. In the prakara, are several shrines in addition to a large pillared mandapa. The garbhagriha has stone images of Saptamatrikas with Dakshinamurti to the right and Vinayaka to the left. The main image of Chamunda faces south and is worshipped as the chief deity Kolaramma.  In the southern cell are the stucco colossi of the Saptamatrikas and the utsavamurti of Kolaramma.