Hoysala period inscriptions, sculptures discovered in Pandavapura

Hoysala period inscriptions, sculptures discovered in Pandavapura

The sculptural panel of Bhairavi discovered in Pandavapura taluk of Mandya district.

The sculptural panel of Bhairavi discovered in Pandavapura taluk of Mandya district.
| Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

A team of researchers have discovered an inscription belonging to the 12th and the 13th centuries, apart from a few sculptures at Ragimuddenahalli village in Pandavapura taluk of Mandya district.

The discovery was reported by a team of researchers headed by C.S. Shashidhara, N.S. Annapurna, and A.P. Rakshith of the Centre of Excellence for Studies in Classical Kannada and the antiquities were found on the agricultural land of a farmer of the village.

A release said the inscriptions and the sculptures belong to the Hoysala period and among the discoveries is also a rare yogini sculpture of soapstone. A team of scholars with the help of the landowners cleaned and dug the partially buried sculptures and the estampages of the inscriptions were also taken.

The inscription is in the Kannada language of the Hoysala period and there was also a sculpture of Bhairava under a mango tree. What is significant is the discovery of a sculptural panel of Saptamatrikas a the ruins of an Ishwara temple. The inscription provides the names of Shri Veerabhadra, Shri Brahma, Shri Mahadeva, Shri Vasudeva, Shri Varaha, Shri Indira, Shri Chaudeshwarim, and Benaka.

N.S. Rangaraju, former head of Department of History and Archaeology, University of Mysore, said the discovery of Bhairavi and Saptamatrika panel along with inscriptions is rare and thus significant.

Also, the names of the sculptors frequently found in the architectural and sculptural works of Hoysala period are also present in this discovery and the Bhairavi and Saptamatrika idols were sculpted by Baichoja, according to Dr. Shashidhara. The names of Erjoja and Baichoja have been mentioned and the Bhairavi inscription reads as Erjojana maga Baichoja indicating that the former was the son of the latter. The Bhairva idol was sculpted by both father and son as their joint names have been inscribed, he added.

Dr. Shashidhara said another point which is clear from the discovery is that the place was a Shaiva religious centre. This is also reinforced by the presence of a ruined Shiva temple belonging to the Hoysala period complete with Nandi, Shivalinga etc. and the inscriptions were read and analysed by S. Nagarajappa of Epigraphy Branch of the Archaeological Survey of India, according to Dr. Shashidhara.

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