The origin of the Hoysalas is a matter of much interesting speculation and controversy. Like their distinguished contemporaries, the Seunas, the Hoysalas too claim their descent from Yadu (Lunar Dynasty) and call themselves the Yadavas. The conventional titles like, "Yadavanarayana", "Yadavakutambrad-yumani" and "Dvaravatipura-varadhisvara" are common to both the Seunas and the Hoysalas. These details are compiled from internet and by various sources by the Blogger over the years.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Lakshmi-Narasimha Temple (1246 A.D), Nuggehalli, Channarayapattana Taluk, Hassan District.

The present Nuggehalli in Channarayapatna taluk of Hassan district is a home to two elegant temples dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Shiva, belonging to the Hoysala period. This place has a historical past dating back to the early 1246 AD, during which, Hoysala King Someshwara ruled the region.

Present day Nuggehalli was earlier known as Vijaya Somanathapura, an agrahara founded by Bommanna Donnayaka in the year 1246 AD. He served under King Someshwara. Nuggehalli chieftains belonged to the Pudur Vamsha (dynasty) and one of their titles meant that the chief was “Champion over thirteen kings.”

Their genealogy dates back to Thirumalya, the son-in-law of Prauhda Devaraya of Vijayanagara. Further, it is an ancient place near which a Chola king is said to have built Jayagondeshwara temple to which King Vishnuvardhan gave some grants in the year 1121 AD.

The inscriptions found in the temples of Nuggehalli attribute the time and construction of the temples of Lakshmi-Narasimha and Sadashiva as 1246 AD and 1249 AD respectively and to Bommanna Dannayaka during the reign of King Someshwara. The two temples are of very different type, but are of equal importance from the point of view of architecture. Both the temples are well preserved.

Sadashiva Temple

This temple is an Ekakoota type, with a highly remarkable stellate mulaprasada having a completely original super structure. It is the most beautiful Hoysala nagara temple that survives today. It conforms to the nagara style architecturally with the presence of nagara and the absence of harantara recesses.

The whole temple stands on a platform, which is in conformity with the outline of the temple including the mulaprasada. A careful observation reveals that the tower above the mulaprasada is a little out of proportion.
A bhumija element of architecture is reflected in the tower and the original temple consisted of a sanctum, a sukanasi, navaranga with porches and a Nandi mantapa. There is also a big hall with a shrine for the goddess, another hall on a lower level and a lofty Maha Dwara that exists today, were added to this original structure.

Lakshmi-Narasimha Temple

This ornate Trikoota temple with its exquisite carvings, giant wall - shrines, friezes, an embellished tower and a sukanasi - all standing on a platform, are bewitching to one’s eye. The central vimana only has the original tower while the other towers on the lateral vimanas are the latter additions made to the existing roof. The steps originally provided to the platform in the eastern section, is now enclosed by latter extensions of the frontal portion. Thus, it has lost its functional unity with the temple.

Three walled-shrines in the surrounding walls of the central vimana add to its splendor, enhancing the overall beauty of the temple. A cornice divides the outer walls horizontally. The lower portion is embellished with around 120 large wall images depicting anecdotes from popular epics of
Mahabharata and other puranas.

These wall - images are mainly the work of the then popular sculptors Mallitamma and Baichoja. This fact is supported by the attestation borne by these images. Vishnu as Vamana, Varaha, and Arjuna shooting the fish, are a few images, among many, are outstanding examples of fine sculpting by these master sculptors. On friezes, apart from the usual makaras, hansas, elephants, we find stories associated with Lord Krishna.

The central sanctum with an antharala enshrines cult-image of Kesava. In the northern and southern shrines (both without the antharala), we find cult-images of Lakshmi-Narasimha and Venugopala respectively.

Nuggehalli is not only a pilgrimage spot, but also a school of temple architecture. These temples are open to devotees on all the days and the daily pooja and special poojas are performed in this temple.

Nuggehalli is situated at the mid-point on the Tiptur-Channarayapatna state highway, the distance between them being around 60 kms. As both Channarayapatna and Tiptur are situated on the National highway, they are well connected to Bangalore city.


  1. A good blog to increase awareness about old temples and traditions. Please keep it up.

  2. please let us know mobile / phone no office or priest.