Jan 6, 2018

Kallagasi, Anegundi

August 14, 2017
The second morning at Anegundi I went for a short drive and walk while Pushpa got ready at the home-stay. Barely 300 meters from Anegundi village entrance, I saw this ancient stone structure. A simple mantapa. What seems like a mantapa could be a temple gateway.

A stone sign calls this structure as Kallagasi. Kallu means stone in Kannada. No idea what Gasi means. Actually there are two structures here, one is the mantapa and the other is the door frame in the front.

Also, notice the image of Gajalaxmi on the door frame. Normally Gajalaxmi is present on entrances. So, this could be a gateway to a temple ..but there's no temple in the vicinity. Perhaps next time when I'm here, I'll explore the area beyond the coconut trees.

A closer look at Gajalaxmi.

 The Mantapa is has eight columns of two types, four of each type. Of the farthest columns, the left side one seems incompletely done. Looks like work was abandoned before completion.

Taking a peek at the mantapa roof which comprises of four layers. At the ceiling center is beautiful nine-pointed star with a lotus in full bloom. This definitely is not a simple mantapa, there was something grand planned which never saw came into being.

Taking a closer look at the star and lotus. The sharp lines / angles and the precision of the work is truly amazing. Wish I'd taken a shot standing directly below it. The precision would be better pronounced in that view.

Truly, our ancient builders and sculptures were extraordinary beings. Simple life, high thinking and amazing deeds.

Right opposite Kallagasi is this palm, peaceful looking isn't it? In the background is a rock hill named Ginger hill. A local mentioned that ancient people known as Ginger lived on this hill hence the name. It seems there are ruins of ancient houses. Something very interesting ..another reason to come back here.

Palms are among my favorites. As a child I'd dreamed of living in a desert growing date palm :)

Anegundi . see you again.


Nikhil said...

Good dedicated post to a lone mantapa/gateway/temple. Looking by the pictures and your observations and thoughts, I am wondering if this would be an abandoned building (incomplete as seen in that column) or a repaired/restored building? It would definitely not be easy or even feasible to replace a column, but is possible.
What if, that single free column on left outside the gajalaxmi entrance is that last shaft? If so why is it outside? Was it replaced, due to issue with the rock of the sculpted column? Or was it a method to use simple column and then replace them with sculpted ones later?
Close examination could reveal. This is more likely a temple in itself and not a gateway, due to its central star ceiling. The footprints on the opposite side of the doorway, could reveal if the main adhistahna projected outwards of the squarish plan. The outer walls are ofcourse missing, and would have not used the four sided sculpted columns as the central hall.
Something to investigate further there, you or anyone who visits this manatapa.

Unknown said...

Rather than saying incomplete what this has been ruined?

teamgsquare said...

Interesting structure..

siddeshwar said...

Thanks you Nikhil, Raj and TGS.

Updating a point- Kallagasi can be split into Kallu + Agasi. In Kannada, Kallu means stone and Agasi means village square. Not sure of Agasi has another meaning. Need to research more on this.

Nikhil - The construction could be abandoned due to war. Probably this was still under construction when enemy forces occupied Vijayanagara hence incomplete? Pondering around your other points / questions as well..

Raj - there are no visible signs of any attempt to destroy. I feel the structure was ignored or at the most might have been used as a temporary shelter.

Manjula Umesh said...

Its wonderful that you explore and let us know about the places which doesn't come into must visit, as many of us while touring will have a list about the places which are known, famous ones, so we won't bother to check out as thoroughly as you do, so I do enjoy going through your posts to feel the ambience of the places as you capture it effectively.
As per my knowledge Agasi means outer area of a village, Umesh says it's entrance to the fort or living place in earlier times, the entrance to the Dharwad fort is still called as "Agasi baagilu" at Dharwad.

siddeshwar said...

Manjula - Thank you. Yes, what remains of Dharwad fort is called Agasi Baagla.

Nikhil - adding another point. The structure stand at ground level which is normal for gateways. Had it been a temple, a platform would be present.