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Notes on the Geography of Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya

A mile or two north of Lankatilaka, there's another temple.  It was completed in 1344 by a South Indian architect named Ganesvarachari.  Like Lankatilaka, it combines Buddhist and Hindu elements.  The geometry isn't so striking and the size is more modest, but the building is of stone, rather than brick, and seems to grow from the bedrock it sits on.

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Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 1

A stupa at the entrance is overshadowed by a massive and ungainly Kandyan roof.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 2

At the rear of the stupa platform, an emergent elephant.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 3

The temple sits on bedrock.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 4

The view from the side and looking toward the front.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 5

The temple, seen from the rear.

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Entrance.

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Dancers on the risers.

 

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Riser closeup.

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The style is South Indian, as one might expect.

 

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 10

One of the two massive columns supporting the porch. It's more complex when viewed from the other side.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 11

It's a tri-column monolith, one of two holding up the heavy stone-slab roof.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 12

Base of one of the monoliths. 

 

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 13

There are hints of Hinduism in these columns, for example this dancing Shiva on the right monolith.

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The image house.

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Inside, the temple has been wretchedly improved with fluorescent tubing, an accordion gate, and tile flooring.

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The central image, similar to the one at Lankatilaka.

Sri Lanka: Gadaladeniya picture 17

Off to the side, a Vishnu devale.


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