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Lakshminarasimha Temple, Nuggehalli

DISTRICT: Hassan;
TALUK: Channarayapatna
LOCALITY: Nuggehalli (lat. 130 00' N; Long. 760 25' E)
APPROACH: AIRPORT: Bengaluru;
RAILWAY STATION: Hassan;
BUS STATION: Nuggehalli

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The Lakshmi-Narasimha temple is a trikutachala constructed in 1246 AD during the reign of Hoysala Somesvara. The three sanctums house images of Kesava in the west, Lakshmi Narasimha in north and Venugopala in south. On plan, the temple has three sanctums, the western has sukanasi opening into a navaranga, preceded by a large mukhamandapa, a later pillared mandapa and a mahadvara, all set in a prakara in east-west orientation. The main temple, and the later period mandapa, is built on a raised platform. The western sanctum has three devakosthas at north, south and west and accommodates the images of Sarasvati, Durga and Harihara. Coming under the class of ornate variety of Hoysala temples, the mouldings of the adhisthana proper are treated with friezes of elephants, horse riders, kirtimukha scroll, narrative friezes of myths, makaras and hamsas. The most interesting aspect is that the mythological narrative friezes are exclusively from the Bhagavatha. The bhitti is similar to that of Kesava temple at Somnathpur, elegant sculptures are placed shoulder to shoulder under patra-latha torana. The architrave is marked by single and double pilaster turrets with minor deities. The typical eave has a cornice with ornate dentil decorations and the prastara in its composition has a hara of sculptured kuta , panjara, and shala. The superstructure over the western sanctum is intact and those on the northern and southern sides have been renovated. The western one is of tritala Dravida class with an urdhva padma griva and adho padma stupi with a finial. The mahamandapa and other subshrines within the enclosure veneered with granite blocks and cubical pillars carrying flat roofs delineate typical late Vijayanagara features.