The Info List - Virupaksha Temple

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VIRUPAKSHA TEMPLE is located in Hampi
350 km from Bangalore
, in the state of Karnataka
in southern India
. It is part of the GROUP OF MONUMENTS AT HAMPI, designated a UNESCO
World Heritage Site . Virupaksha is a form of Shiva
and has other temples dedicated to him, notably at the Group of Monuments at Pattadakal , another World Heritage Site. The temple was built by Lokhamahadevi, the queen of Vikramaditya II. The queen built this temple to commemorate the king's victory over the Pallava of Kanchipuram. The temple has a dravadian style of architecture and closely resembels the famous Pallava temple of Kailasnath at Kanchipuram

Hampi, capital of the Vijayanagara empire , sits on the banks of the Tungabhadra River . Virupaksha Temple
Virupaksha Temple
is the main center of pilgrimage at Hampi, and has been considered the most sacred sanctuary over the centuries. It is intact among the surrounding ruins and is still used in worship. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva
, known here as Virupaksha, as the consort of the local goddess Pampa who is associated with the Tungabhadra River. There is also a Virupakshini Amma temple (mother goddess) in a village called Nalagamapalle, Chittoor district , Andhra Pradesh, approximately 100 km from Tirupati.


* 1 History * 2 Temple structure * 3 Festivals * 4 References * 5 External links


The temple's history is uninterrupted from about the 7th century. The Virupaksha-Pampa sanctuary existed well before the Vijayanagara capital was located here. Inscriptions referring to Shiva
date back to the 9th and 10th centuries. What started as a small shrine grew into a large complex under the Vijayanagara
rulers. Evidence indicates there were additions made to the temple in the late Chalukyan and Hoysala periods, though most of the temple buildings are attributed to the Vijayanagar period. The huge temple building was built by Lakkana Dandesha, a chieftain under the ruler Deva Raya II of the Vijayanagara Empire .

Under the Vijayanagara
rulers, in the middle of the 14th century, there began a flowering of native art and culture. When the rulers were defeated by Muslim invaders in the 16th century, most of the wonderful decorative structures and creations were systematically destroyed.

The religious sect of Virupaksha-Pampa did not end with the destruction of the city in 1565. Worship there has persisted throughout the years. At the beginning of the 19th century there were major renovations and additions, which included ceiling paintings and the towers of the north and east gopura.


At present, the main temple consists of a sanctum, three ante chambers, a pillared hall and an open pillared hall. A pillared cloister , entrance gateways, courtyards, smaller shrines and other structures surround the temple.

The nine-tiered eastern gateway, which is the largest at 50 meters, is well-proportioned and incorporates some earlier structures. It has a brick superstructure and a stone base. It gives access to the outer court containing many sub-shrines.

The smaller eastern gateway leads to the inner court with its numerous smaller shrines.

Another gopuram towards north known as the