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Panchalingeshvara Temple, Govindanahalli

DISTRICT: Mandya: TALUK: K.R. Pet     
LOCALITY: Govindanahalli (Lat. 12° 41' N; Long. 76° 33' E)     
APPROACH AIRPORT: Bengaluru; RAILWAY STATION: Pandavapura; BUS STATION: Govindanahalli

Govindanahalli formed part of Gangavadi under the Gangas of Talkad. Later it came under the Chola rule. The Hoysalas annexed the Chola territory and ruled most parts of southern Karnataka in between 12th-13th century AD. The Panchalingesvara temple is a good specimen of the Hoysala style datable to 1237-1238 AD. The temple has five garbhagrihas in north-south orientation and faces east.  It is the extant specimen of Hoysala temple having quintuple plan. They have a separate sukanasi and navarangas in the same orientation. All are connected to a long pillared hall at the eastern side of the structure. There are two entrance doorways opposite the second and third garbhagriha respectively with a porch for each. The wall is modestly decorated with pilaster turrets and sculptural representations of the Bhagavata and epics. In the region of the navaranga the bhitti has a miniature shrine built into the southern wall. The pyramidal structure is in 3 tiers with ribbed conical two-tiered stupi culminating in a finial. The antarala has a prominently projected sukanasa. Except for the karnakutas; the hara of each tala including prasthara stands unfinished. The navaranga has seventeen niches, some of them having beautiful sculptures of the Hoysala art. The famous Hoysala sculptor Mallitamma is said to have carved two dvarapala figures.