Lakshminarasimha Temple, Javagal, Karnataka – a Hoysala Gem

Javagal, a small town of Hassan, I knew was famous as Indian Cricket Player Javagal Srinath’s birthplace… that is how popular cricket in India is! I feel Javagal should be better known for the Hoysala treasure that it owns – the immaculately sculptured Lakshminarasimha Temple! When we reached there the temple priest, a young boy of 19 years was closing the temple for noon. Seeing us he readily opened the doors and helped us offer our prayers there.

Lord Lakshminarasimha, an avatar of Lord Vishnu is the main deity here. There is another temple dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi just beside this temple. The complex is huge but not so well looked after like the temples in Belavadi and Doddagaddavalli. I can’t understand why ASI does its work of looking after these Hoysala gems selectively!

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal 1Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal 2

History of Lakshminarasimha Temple

The exact details of time of construction of these temples are not known as the inscription tablet or stone with info is damaged. The construction of this temple took place during 13th century, much later than Veeranarayana Temple of Belavadi. King Vira Someshwara (1235 – 1263) built this grand Hoysala Temple. Hoysalas ruled the southern Deccan from 1026 to 1343 AD. King Vira Someshwara was 9th of the 12 kings of Hoysala dynasty that ruled.

Lakshminarasimha Temple Architecture

Garbhagruhas (the portion that houses the idols) here are arranged in a triangular pattern.

  • Lord Vishnu’s idol is in the main sanctum,
  • Lord Venugopal’s idol in the southern
  • and Lord Lakshminarasimha’s in northern sanctum.

We saw each of the idols laden with several garlands of colorful flowers.

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal Narasimha idolLakshminarasimha Temple Javagal idol 2

Only the central shrine has vestibule or tower above it. Three sides of the central shrine are visible from outside, while only one side of the other 2 shrines is visible externally. The temple is small, hence has a closed mantapa, enclosed by walls up to the ceiling and decorated well in the outside. Mukhamantapa has a small seating arrangement with very less numbers of pillars compared to the temple of Belavadi.

Stunning Work on Temple Exteriors

The outer wall here fascinated me the most! It has stunning workmanship on it with carved sculptures. There are 140 wall panel images, each made with attention to fine details. Seems like each figure has a story to tell. I have not seen the dashavatars depicted so finely in any other temple as they are done here.

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal exteriorsLakshminarasimha Temple Javagal exteriors 2Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal elephant

The base has six equal width rectangular moldings.

  • Starting from the top, the friezes depict; hansa (birds) in the first frieze,
  • makara (aquatic monsters) in the second, epics and other stories
  • in the third (usually from the Hindu epic Ramayana, the Mahabharata, and stories of Krishna),
  • leafy scrolls in the fourth,
  • horses in the fifth
  • and elephants in the sixth (bottom frieze).

Most impressive of all sights in the exteriors is how the friezes go all along the temple circumference… it is like the characters of the friezes are following the one ahead in a disciplined manner!

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal wall panel 2Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal wall panel

Unlike other Hoysala temples, this Lakshminarasimha Temple of Javagal doesn’t have elephant balustrades (parapets) on either side of the steps leading to temple. Instead there are 2 of them outside the entrance to the whole complex. Dwarapalikas to this temple are the Vijayanagara style door guards. You can find them near the mukhamantapa (main entrance). All these carvings are carried out on grey soap stone, which is easy to sculpt and hardens on exposure to air.

Location of Lakshminarasimha Temple

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal is 15kms from Halebeedu temple of Hassan district. It is 195kms from Bangalore.

Lakshminarasimha Temple Javagal 3

 

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32 Responses

  1. Synnöve says:

    Wow, wonderful impressions of this special temple. I like the sculptures in stone.
    Best regards, Synnöve

  2. eileen says:

    Wonderful tour of the temple. Thanks for sharing your visit. Great series of photos. Happy Wednesday, I hope you have a great day!

  3. Niranjan says:

    Nice post. Thanks for sharing details about this lovely temple.

  4. Incredible photos! Fun to learn about the meaning behind the carvings as well as see so many wonderful details.

  5. Paresh says:

    Love the flower decoration 🙂

  6. I think is the most detailed temple you have shown. I wonder how long it took to complete the works and how many people participated.

  7. The temples are awesome with all the ornate detailing. I cannot get enough of them.

  8. What a gorgeous Temple.

  9. Magnificent temple, so ornate, the sculptures are great.

  10. Arun says:

    To be honest, when I read the title, I instantly remembered ‘Javagal Srinath’, but I agree with you, we should remember it for the beautiful temple it has.

    Thanks for the detailed description, Indrani. Apart from the shots of the brilliant architecture of the temple, I really liked the close up shot of the idol. Hope to visit this temple soon.

  11. The temple is truly magnificent, beautiful carvings and amazing architecture….but yea it is difficult to take out cricket from India. Javagal gets you Srinath’s name as top of the mind recall. Sunil Gavaskar and Srinath made an awesome opening pair 🙂

  12. Surely after reading this article this place will not only remember for cricket but also for masterpiece artwork and the hard work behind that.

  13. Mridula says:

    Looks like a beautiful place!

  14. vatsala mallya says:

    What an incredible architechture !! One gets awestruck by the magnificence of the sculptures . How many years the artisans must have worked to produce such gems out of rocks ,it is unimaginable !

  15. Lakshmi Narasimhar is a warrior. People, in this part of TN, will pray him just to destroy their enemies.
    Like the pictures

  16. Whoa! it seems you set a probe on this temple. Thanks for sharing.

  17. thomas says:

    wow! so delicate are the carvings that i think will be quite difficult to to be done nowadays

  18. Rishabh says:

    Interesting History about Javagal. Prompted me to google it up ha 😀
    Great read and love the temple pictures.

  19. Priyanka says:

    Wish we had visited this place too!
    Great detailed write up.

  20. Ranjini says:

    Beautiful temple. The sculptures have been carved to perfection. I have always admired sculptors. The patience required is immense!

  21. Those well carvings are gorgeous. They remind me of the ones I have seen at Angkor Wat. I love the colorful garlands, too. Thanks for linking up this week! #TPThursday

  22. Amazing architecture… some great sculptures, I wish to take my Grandma here :’)

  23. Yogi Saraswat says:

    Its a new information for me that Javagal Srinath’s first name is derived from his native place . Amazing . I know that most of the Hindu names in Karnataka are starts with their native place as Hardanhalli of H.D.Devegodda. what a beautiful and intricate structure is exist in these temples.

  24. budget jan says:

    The detail on the carving of the dashavators is beautifully intricate!

  25. I also know the temple town only through Javagal Srinath..and now so much info on the beautifully carved temples..Halebid is such a marvel ..

  26. The architecture and details are just beautiful!! The last picture shows how magnificient the temple is. To be honest, had no idea Javagal was a village until I read about it here. Great post Indrani 🙂

  27. looks like an awesome place, this type of architectural works always attracts me a lot, pic very nicely taken.

  28. Carol says:

    Thank you for sharing these images of such a beautiful, ancient sacred site. I’ll never make it there but I feel I have.

  29. Lovely. I will definitely visit this place and temple when I take a trip to south. I haven’t explored Karnataka much yet.

  30. Shivam Pandey says:

    Thanks for Sharing details about Indian culture, temple, Nature.

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