Kadamba architecture

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Bhuvaraha Narasimha temple Halasi, Karnataka

Kadamba architecture was a style of temple architecture founded by Mayurasharma in the 4th century AD in Karnataka, India.[1] Kadambas created new style of architecture which was the basis of the Hoysalas style of architecture, developed original school of sculpture, was the forerunner of series of South Indian sculptors.[2] Many temples at Aihole, Badami and Hampi are built in Kadamba style.


During 345 AD to 525 AD, the ancient royal dynasty of Karnataka, the Kadambas made early contribution to the architecture of Karnataka and they are the originators.[3]

Kadamba art

The most prominent feature of Kadamba architecture was Shikara called Kadamba Shikara. The tower rises in steps without any decoration (pyramid shaped shikara) with pinnacle (Stupika or Kalasha) on top. The Kadamba temples vimana usually square in plan, the tower is pyramidal shape and constitutes a series of horizontal step stages decorated with uniform series of quadrangular vertical projections and covering vestibules attached to vimana, The stages are more numerous and less elevated, devoid of pavilion ornamentation.

Kadamba's architecture and sculpture contributed to the foundation of Chalukya-Hoysala style.

Temples in Kadamba architectural style

Two Shiva temples on Hemakuta hill at Hampi
Mallikarjuna group of temples at Badami
A shrine with Kadamba style superstructure at Mahakuta
Ruined temple at Aihole near Durga temple, in Kadamba style

The 5th century monuments at Halasi are the oldest surviving Kadamba structure. The most prominent feature is the Kadamba Shikara with a Kalasa on top. In Belgaum district, Hattikeshwara, Kalleshwara and Someshwara temples at Halasi and group of temples at Kadaroli illustrates the Kadamba architecture. The old Jain basadi containing a sanctum and a sukanasi at Halasi the most ancient stone temple in Karnataka. Kadamba architecture constituted an important link between the Shatavahanas, Pallavas and Chalukyas architecture. Kadamba architecture elements in Hoysala Architecture.[4]


Many temples at Aihole including Ramlingesvara temple Complex, Badigergudi temple and small shrines at Durga temple complex, Tryambakeshwara temple complex, ruined temple at Mallikarjuna temple complex, shrines at Jyotirlinga temple complex, small temple at Hucchimalli temple complex, ruined temples Galaganatha temple complex and many temples along the Malaprabha River are built in Kadamba architectural (Shikhara) style.


Kadamba style Mallikarjuna group of temples and Bhutanatha group of temples[1](temple on adjacent small hill top) at Badami.


Including Jain temples and two Shiva temples and many ruined temples on Hemakuta hill at Hampi built in Kadamba style of architecture.


There are many shrines with Kadamba superstructure at Mahakuta including Bhimeshwara ling temple, newly renovated temple outside main temple complex.


There are many temples and Basadis at Bandalike (Bandalika), it is about 35 km from Shikaripura including Shantinath basadi, Sahasralinga temple and Someshwara threemurthy temples those are of Rastrakutas and Kadambas period, temples built in Kadamba style of architecture.

Belgaum district
Uttara Kannada district
  • Including Madhukeshwara temple and Parvati temple many other temples at Banavasi has Kadamba style architecture (Shikhara).
  • Ratnatraya Basti at Bilgi a small village near Siddapura, Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka.
  • The 12th and 14th century AD Shankara Narayana temple [2] at Haliyur and Venkataramana Swamy temple [3] at Muttinkere near Sonda in Sirsi taluk of Uttarkannada district.
  • Mallikarjuna Temple at Haliyal.
Hassan district
  • Yoga Narasimha temple at Holalu in Hassan district
  • The Kadamba Bettada Byreshwara Shiva temple built in black stone near Hanbal a hill station of Sakleshpur (in Western Ghats) in Hassan district.
  • The Kadamba style Keerthinarayana temple [4] is at Heragu in Hassan district.
Gadag district
Jain temple at Lakshmeshwara
  • The old Jain temple at Lakshmeshwara has Kadamba shikara.
  • Trilingeshwara temple at Hosur in Gadag district
  • Narasimha temple Gadag, veera narayana temple complex Gadag
Haveri district
  • The Kere Someshwara Temple at Kalakeri in Hangal taluk of Haveri district,[6] is in Kadamba style architecture (Shikhara).
  • Basavann Temple in the Chaudayyadanapura Mukteshwara temple complex, Haveri District.
  • Narasimha temple Narasapura near Chaudayyadanapura, Haveri District.
  • Veerabhadra temple Hale Honatti in Ranebennur taluk of Haveri district
Chikmagalur district
  • The Kadamba style Bhairaveshwara Temple at Byrapura, 22 km from Mudigere (in western ghats) in Chikmagalur district near to Kukke Subramanya.
  • Prasanna Rameshwara Temple Devarunda, Mudigere in Chikmagalur district
  • Malahanikareshvara, Bhavani temples shringeri.
Other parts of Karnataka
  • The 12th century AD Shiva temple at Udri Shimoga [5][7] built in Kadamba style architecture.
  • Mallikarjuna Temple and Neelakanteshwara Temple, Kalasi
  • Tryambakeshwara temple (Trikutachala) with Kadamba Shikhara at Kavital in Manvi taluk in Raichur district.
  • Jain temple [6] at Brahmagiri hill in Chitradurga district.
Other parts of India
  • Panchaganga Temple at Kolhapur built in Kadamba style.
  • Mahabaleshwar Temple, Krishnai Temple Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra
  • Kaneri math kadamba style is in Karveer tehsil in Kolhapur district in Maharashtra
Andhra Pradesh
  • Temples at Srisailam built during Vijayanagara empire (by Harihara Raya) has Kadamba Shikhara.


  • Papanasi group of temples at Alampur dedicated to Joglamba devi are built in Kadamba style architecture.
  • Chaya Someshwara temple at Panagal in Nalgonda.
  • Ramappa temple in Mulug district
  • Thousand pillar temple in Warangal

Chalukya-Kadamba architectural style

  • The Uma Maheshwara temple[8] at Hosagunda in Sagar taluk of Shimoga district.

Hoysala-Kadamba architectural style

Kadamba-Yadava architectural style

Temples with this style

See also

Gallery of Kadamba Shikhara


  1. "Kadamba Style Temple Architecture". Retrieved 22 July 2011.
  2. The Kadamba Kula A History of Ancient and Mediaeval Karnataka Reprint Bombay 1931 Edition -Preface. by George M. Moraes, H. Heras S.J.(Asian Educational Services). Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  3. "Kadambas of Banavasi". Retrieved 22 July 2011.
  4. "Kadamba Architecture - Banavasi". Retrieved 23 August 2013.
  5. "Kamal Basti has Kadamba Nagara shikara". Archived from the original on 12 January 2014. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
  6. "Six chosen for development as 'Heritage Cities' in State". The Hindu. 24 January 2008. Archived from the original on 29 January 2008. Retrieved 3 September 2013.
  7. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 25 October 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. "Renovation work of Uma Maheshwara temple begins". Retrieved 27 August 2013.
  9. "CHANNAKESVA TEMPLE TOGETHER WITH ADJACENT". Archived from the original on 27 August 2013. Retrieved 27 August 2013.
  10. "Goa - Tambdi Surla Temple - Kadamba-Yadava architecture". Retrieved 23 August 2013.

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