Kolaramma Temple

Kolaramma is the presiding deity of the town of Kolar in Karnataka. This is a small stone temple surviving time amidst the urban developments around the temple. The temple has a L shaped sanctum with two shrines one for Kolaramma and the other for the seven mothers or Saptamatras. Both the shrines are within the same chamber. The Kolaramma shrine has a small wagon roof tower.

The stucco figures in the second shrine are unusually large. This shrines also hosts the goddess Chelamma or the scorpion goddess. This was the first time I have seen or heard of a goddess dedicated to scorpions. Yet another god in the infinity pool of Hindu universe.

The outer walls of the sanctum are filled with inscriptions apparently from Chola period. I was able to identify few Tamil characters from the inscriptions but not able to make full words of it.

If you are visiting this temple, its advised to visit the Sri Someshwara Temple also which is just about 300 meters from the Kolaramma temple.

Kolara or ancient Kuvalapura was ruled by Gangas in the early part of 3rd century AD. Gangas were succeeded by Cholas followed by Hoysalas and Vijayanagara rulers.

The temple indicates two shrines in an ordinary structure in Dravidian style of architecture. This main temple faces east whereas larger shrine faces north. Both share a common pillared mantapa. The mahadwara has an imposing appearance with a well carved doorway. The lower course of the wall to the left of the mukhamantapa has fragments of a number of Rajendra Chola’s inscriptions. The walls of the main shrine are treated with slendu pilasters. The adhistana of the garbhagriha has jagati and tripatta kumbuda mouldings. The adhistana mouldings and the pilastered outer wall of the temple are carved with numerous inscriptions in Tamil characters. A Bhutangana and lion friezes are depicted below above the comes respectively.

Inside the temple are the images of Sapthamatrikas (seven mothers) and the image of Kolaramma, in the form of Mahishasura Mardhini with eight hands and a demon under the feet. In another room to the right have exact copies of Sapthamatrika images in brick and madder. There is a stone image about six feet high Kalabhairava, but people call it as Mukanacharamma owing its nose being broken. The temple does not have any super structure.

Prakaram: Kolaramma temple
A Prakaram, in Indian architecture is the compound around the sanctum. Usually large Hindu Temples have one or more prakarams. Kolaramma temple has one prakaram.
Kolaramma Temple
Kolaramma Temple
Kolaramma Temple
Kolaramma Temple
A war scene depicted in the Kolaramma temple.
A war scene depicted in the Kolaramma temple.

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