Doddagaddavalli (doDDagaddavaLLi) (ದೊಡ್ಡಗದ್ದವಳ್ಳಿ) which happens to be a a very small village now, was once an ‘agrahara’ of some repute. It is well known for the Lakshmidevi temple which is a classic illustration of the Hoysala architecture and sculpture. This temple was built earlier than the more renowned temples at Belur, Halebeedu and Somanathapura. This is located in Hassan talluk and district at a distance of about 16 kilometers from Hassan town. This place was also known as ‘abhinava kollApura’ in the context of the famous Mahalakshmi temple at Kollapur. The temple was built in the year 1113-1114 A.D. during the regime of Vishnuvardhana. It was built by kallahaNa rAhuta, a prosperous merchant of those times and his wife sahajA dEvi. It is built with Chloritic Schist or soap stone.
“Overall the temple has the older Hoysala style where there is only one eaves running round the temple where the main towers meet the wall of the shrine. At the base of the wall of the shrines are 5 mouldings and between the mouldings and the eaves, the usual panels of Hoysala sculptures depicting Hindu gods, goddesses and their attendants is missing. Instead, the whole space is taken up by decorative miniature towers on pilasters.” (Wikipedia)
This temple is unique even in the context of Hoysala architecture because it is not built on a platform. (jagati) Jagati, later became a distinctive feature of the Hoysala style. The temple stands on a land measuring 118 feet by 116 feet surrounded by a compound which is about seven feet tall. There are two main entrances leading to the temple one in the east and the other in the west. The manTap adjoining the west entrance contains sixteen pillars and seven Bhuvaneshvaris.
Doddagaddavalli is an example for ‘catuSkUTa temple’. The main temple contains four sancta and four Gods are installed there. VishNu, kALi, BUtanAtha linga and Lakshmi occupy these four shrines. Lakshmi is however, the main deity. MallOja MaNiYoja was the sculptor who built this temple as per inscriptional evidence. In addition to these, there are four more small temples in the corners of the courtyard and yet another temple in the south east side with a ‘sukanaasi’ and sanctum. AlI in all, this temple complex has nine towers (shikhara) built in the Hoysala style. All of them have the Hoysala logo inscribed on their surface.
The icon of Lakshmi is exquisitely carved. It is about 4 feet tall and it has shankha, cakra, gade (mace) and a rosary (japasara) in its four hands. The icons of TAnDavEshvara, gajalakshmi and yOgAnarasimha are also important.
One can find inscriptions installed by Vishnuvardhana, Narasimha-1 and BallALa-2 in the premises of the temple.
1. Lakshmi Devi temple, Doddagaddavalli (Photographs)
3. Lakshmi Devi temple at Doddagaddavalli Number of good photographs and an article.)
4. Doddagaddavalli Temple (Another View of the temple)
5. ‘The Lakshmidevi temple at Doddagaddavalli’ by R Narasimhachar, 1919, 1982. –
6. ‘A Complete Guide to Hoysala Temples’ by Gerard Foekema, 1996.