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Temples and Inscriptions, Kuppagadde

DISTRICT: Shimoga; TALUK: Soraba
LOCALITY: Kuppagadde (Lat.14°48; Long.74o 59’ E)

Kuppagadde situated 15 km north-east of Soraba is the ancient Pushpavathi.  The temple of Ramesvara is dated to 1189 AD was built by Rama, a Brahmin of Mane family and was consecrated by the illustrious Kalamukha saint Vamashakti of the Kodiya matha of Belligavi. Facing east, the temple consists of a garbhagriha, a sukanasi and an open porch, to which a long hall of five ankanas (squares) with a central raised naive and side aisles supported by 24 pillars is added. This large front mandapa has entrances at north, south and east. The doorways of garbhagriha and sukanasi have perforated screens on either side. In the eastern end of the mandapa has a well sculptured couchant bull. In addition, there is an exquisitely carved sculpture of 1.83 m high image of Venugopala, Mahishamardini, Ganesha and Saptamatrikas. In elevation, the mandapa has a pada, and adhokumuda, a high kantha with a pattika. Over this rests the kakshasana treated with lozenge and pillastered turrets. The heavy eave and prastara is supported by circular pillars placed over the jagati. The region of the mahamandapa and garbhagriha have an indented plan with ratha, anuratha and pratiratha projections. At adhisthana it has a high pada, an adhokumuda, a knife edged tripattakumuda moulding treated with dentil decorations. The bhitti proper rest immediately above the adhisthana and has a pattika of lozenges decorations at the base. Further, the bhitti at garbhagriha is pierced with three devakoshtas at cardinal directions with vesara turrets. The offsetted malasthana is followed by a less conspicuous eave over wich in the region of sanctum rises a saptatala Kadamba nagara shikhara culminating in a kuta type of stupi with a large finial. At the corresponding ratha offset are placed intricately carved independent panjara motifs with the various aspects of Siva. The sukanasa in the region of mahanasa has a large ornate kirtimukhatorana.