Jun 16, 2018

Guards Quarters, Hampi

August 13, 2017

Guards' Quarters building is located right next to elephant stables, the two lengthy buildings are perpendicular to each other in plan. Guards quarter building was strategically located to provide security for Zenana enclosure inside which the treasury was present. It's a single storey structure built on a 10' high platform measuring 146' x 63'. Its front features columns and arches. Inside it has a courtyard and an aisle, no rooms or chambers.

At the eastern corner of the building's outer wall is a small sculpture, not very clear. There are two characters sitting on their rear ends with their backs touching. They seem to be elephants. No idea what they signify

Just like elephant stables, this structure was projecting beams.. no idea what the purpose is. Notice the crests and ridges inside the arches. Seems like an experimental design.

Today the guards quarters is a museum, It has a small collection of sculptures probably found in and around Hampi. At the entrance is this 3½ foot tall elephant, though damaged one can imagine its original beauty. Its features are quite realistic, seems like a bull. I\m not sure if the sculpture was completed or incomplete.

In this view, it has a natural look of a running elephant. A well fed and worked out beast. Must have been made in memory of one of the royal elephants.

The elephant's left side is plain rock.. this is why I think if ts incomplete.

Lets enter the building. The entrance is flanked by two long open halls. This seems to be guards' rest place. Probably guards had to be on duty for days or weeks and off duty guards rested here.

These halls have a good view of elephant stables and Zenana enclosure.

This is the inner portion.. a rectangular open hall around the courtyard. The building entrance connects directly to the courtyard. Its possible horses were brought in here.

Opposite end of the building. In present day this is a museum, the artifacts are kept in the open hall.

Here are few items.. girl in a fashionable skirt and jewelry. Standing Hanuman offering his Namaskar. And a serpent woman, Naga Kanya.

Then we have black stone sculptures of chubby Ganesha and a small hero-stone. Visitors were curious to feel Ganesha's tummy :) wish the care-takers bathed the Ganesha daily and offered it a flower, it would look so much better. Coming to the hero-stone, its depicts two well built warriors.. is it Hakka and Bukka, the founders of Vijayanagara empire.

Then we have another black stone Ranganatha reclining on serpent bed and his consort pressing his feet. Even this idol would so much better had it been free of dust. The lower image depicts deer hunting scene. A hunter is about to shoot a deer and a helper is carrying couple of deer on a shaft.

Apart from these, there are one or two idols of Hanuman.

From here tourists generally move on towards the archaeological museum going past Rangatha Devastana.


Subra Srikant said...

Nice Siddu.����

Anonymous said...

Horse stable or present museum looks royal. What amazes me is outfit of girl. That could not be Indian. That shows we had links with others who are outside present day India. Hukka and Bukka are wearing half pants, they are not in dhoti. Coming to deer hunters, they are shooting such a big one, animal is as tall as hunter, so it is not deer. Finally, they are not elephants, the thinking pose animals are panthers, my guess. Curious. ..

siddeshwar said...

Thank you Subbu and Raj.

@Raj - shorts instead of dhoti.. quite possible. animal looks like deer but out of proportion.