Thursday, August 6, 2009

Laksmi Narasimha Temple, Hampi

If the monolithic Ganesha Statues of Hampi are around 2.3 meters, the statue of Lord Narsimha is much larger than them. This is the biggest statue in Hampi and is of 6.7 meters in height. This statue has been constructed out of a single boulder. As per the inscriptions found it was carved in 1528 A.D. during the rule of Krishnadevaraya.



This idol of the Narasimha was well designed and has large bulging eyes and broad chest, and it is a architectural beauty. Here the Lord is in cross-legged yoga position with the belt supporting the knees. Originally, during the glory days of Hampi, the Goddess Laksmi was seated on his lap. This is confirmed by the presence of one of her hands on the back of the statue. The carving of hand of the Goddess has the finger nails and rings still intact. But due to the destruction in 1565 A.D the
Goddess Laksmi statue was badly damaged and today we can only see the Lord Narsimha alone without the Goddess. The Lord is sitting on the coil of a giant seven-headed snake called AdiSesha. The heads of the snake forms a hood above his head. The entire image is set within the beautiful Makar Torana an arch, with a lion-mask above the hoods of Adisesha. On the either side of the statue there are lions as guard.



This is also popularly known as Ugra Narasimha which means terrifying form. This is attributed to the protruding eyes and the facial expression. Narsimha means half-man and half-lion.

54 comments:

pranksygang said...

You have taken a great picture!

Arun said...

That was very informative, thanks. Did not know there was Lakshmi along with Narasimha.

Where are the lions on both sides of Narasimha? Are you referring to the Makaras on the pillar?

Also, there was contention about the name Ugra or Lakshmi Narasimha a few years back. But can't recall what exactly was it. May be it is about seated Lakshmi?

arabesque said...

the close up feature of this sculpture is very profound.
your detailed description always help me understand this piece better...^-^

Rush said...

yeah the experssions potrayed..u captured them well.

foto CHIP said...

Interesting staty and tales. Looks as it owns the sky :)

Sylvia K said...

Marvelous and informative post as always, Rajesh!

Have a great weekend!

Sylvia

Erin said...

nice capture of the statute and interesting info regarding.
have a wonderful weekend.

Carolyn said...

Nice photo and information with stunning detail. Such an interesting culture. Thanks for sharing.
Blessings and smiles

Anya said...

I never seen
such a beautiful temple :)
Those eyes ..... Wow!!!
Brilliant shot :)

Carver said...

Such an interesting post and great shots.

mkreider said...

It's wonderful that your culture has relics from such distant times.

Diane AZ said...

Fabulous statue! Amazing that it was constructed out of a single boulder. I love your pictures and description.

SandyCarlson said...

Their faces fascinate me. Yet another amazing tour. Thanks.

Hildred and Charles said...

Great post and a most interesting picture. Well captured.

Jacob said...

The eyes have it! Yikes! What a great statue. How did they do that so many years ago? Amazing.

Great photos, too!

Tara R. said...

Wonderful shot and amazing statue.

Pietro said...

Interesting post with nice photos, Rajesh. The statue is really amazing.
Happy Sky Watch!

Glennis said...

Not really a pretty face!

Kirigalpoththa said...

Hi Rajesh,

We have the same kind of ancient sculptures in Sri Lanka too.:) Think they mean the same.

Narasimha - Narasinha (half man, half lion as you mentioned)

Makar Thorana - Makara Thorana (Dragon Pandol)

Best Rgds
K

Mitr - Friend said...

Ugra Narasimhar is the first image that crosses the mind when someone says HAMPI...
Nice pics...

J Bar said...

A bit spooky.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Babli said...

You have described very beautifully with wonderful pictures.I liked it very much.

Protege said...

Such large statues surely invoke awe. I can not imagine the feeling one gets standing next to them.;)

Elisabeth's bright side said...

Great pictures and a great story, very interesting.

magiceye said...

wonderful!

ProdigalWife said...

What a wonderful sculpture--and from a single boulder, that's amazing. Too bad you couldn't have put an apple or something next to it to show scale!

Reader Wil said...

Great picture! And your information is interesting! Thanks for your visit!

Faye Pekas said...

I can understand he could be called terrifying. The facial expression is a big frightening.

Thanks for the interesting history.

bettyl said...

Great photos of a wonderful land!

Sucharita Sarkar said...

Narsimha looks rather angry and scary!

Danton said...

Lucky us to still enjoy the wonders of the distant past preserved. Thank you.

Anna said...

Thanks for sharing good history information, and this is one amazing temple. Beautiful artwork. Anna :)

flyingstars said...

nicely captured shots!

exposemaximum said...

Amazing idols.

RAJI MUTHUKRISHNAN said...

Very nice.

It is so sad that the sculpture of the Goddess Lakshmi has disappeared.

sujata said...

The picture of Narsimha is very well taken! and the post is as always very informative.

T.R. said...

Those bulging eyes are very interesting. And yes terrifying!

JM said...

The 2nd shot is amazing! Very nice work, Rajesh!

Denise said...

A magnificent statue, for it to have been carved centuries ago and yet here we are still able see it through your wonderful photographs. Incredible! A very interesting post, enjoyed reading it and thank you for sharing.

Your EG Tour Guide said...

The statues are amazingly well preserved. It's wonderful that you can visit so many artifacts from so long ago.

Ailurophile said...

Another great landmark, and wonderful photos. Well done!

Megha said...

Very informative. Nice pics.
There is so much in India to be preserved...the sculptures, temples etc.

Asta said...

Hi Rajesh,

WOW, this is absolutely a fantastic sculpture. Wonderful photos and a very informative story.

Reading that this was built by one single person impresses me. That's fantastic!

Best regards
Asta

José Ramón said...

Spectacular monuments good image i curious Greetings

Robert V. Sobczak said...

I'd love to visit someday ... That's one part of the world I've never seen. Someday.

Tammie Lee said...

This is amazingly huge and full of wonderful details. Thank you for sharing.
Spirithelpers

Melusine said...

Magnificent and interesting reading!

George said...

What a fascinating statue! Thanks for sharing both the photo and the information about its history. You did a beautiful job with the collage in the post below as well.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Rajesh: That sculpture was so unusual.

Sumandebray said...

Nice post!
What a master piece of a statue. The expression is so vivid.
We need to conserve as well as showcase the great work left behind by our forefathers.
You are doing a great job!

Jeevan said...

well capture in detail!

Rajesh said...

Arun: Thanks, many people do not know about the existence of Lakshmi due to the name.

pranksygang, foto, Sylvia, Carolyn, Anyan, Carver: Thanks for the appreciation.

arabesque, Rush, Erin, Diane, Sandy, Pietro: Thanks, it has been carved with great precision.

Glennis, J Bar, Faye, Jacob, Sucharita: Thanks, it is a angry face.

Wil, mkreider, Hildred, Tara, Babli, Bettyl, magiceye: Thanks for the appreciation.

Kirigalpoththa: Thanks, there are lot of similarities in the culture.

Mitr: Thanks, I agree with you.

Elisabeth, Danton, flyingstars, Anna, Deepak: Thanks for the appreciation.

Protege, ProdigalWife: Thanks, we look like a dwarf in front of it.

Raji: Thanks, Goddess Laksmi was damaged very badly. That is very sad part.

T.R, guy: Thanks, it is a angry face.

JM, Ailurophile, Jose, Lee, Melusine, George, Jeevan, Sujata: Thanks for the appreciation.

Denise: Thanks, it has been carved with great precision.

EG, Megha, sumandebray: Thanks, lot of effort has been put to preserve whatever little is left.

Asta: Thanks, It was initiated by the King. I am not sure how many people were involved.

Robert: Thanks, you are most welcome.

Barbara Martin said...

Another wonderful post with photos of statues I love so much.

Rajesh said...

Barbara: Thanks for the appreciation.