October 31, 2015

Brahmesvara Temple - Bhubaneswar

Site Name: Brahmesvara Temple 
Site Type: Hindu ancient temple
Location:   Bhubaneswar city, Odisha state, India
Highlights: One of the most important and beautiful ancient temples of Bhubaneswar
Nearest Railway Station: Bhubaneswar
Nearest Airport: Bhubaneswar
How to reach: Well connected by road, rail and air
Hotel: There are many options across the city
Restaurants: Varieties of options

Bhubaneswar, which is the capital city of Odisha (formerly Orissa) state of India, is called as 'the City of Temples'. It once had around 3000 temples and even today hundreds of temples are located in every nook and corner of this heritage rich city. The city is called as Ekamara Kshetra as it has so many Shiva temples. Let us explore Brahmesvara Temple, one of the most important and beautiful temples of Bhubaneswar, in this article.


Brahmesvara temple is located on the right side of the Tankapani Road leading from Ravi Talkies square to Tankapani. It is located very near to another popular temple, Raja Rani Temple. Refer the route map given in the article for exact location.


Brahmesvara temple is one of the important temples of Bhuabneswar. The temple is a living temple and enshrines Shiva Linga. The temple is lavishly sculpted and is one of the most beautiful temples of Bhubaneswar.


Brahmesvara temple was built by Kolavati Devi, the mother of the Somavamshi King Udyotakesari during the 18th year of his reign. It corresponds to the year 1060 CE

Temple Layout:

Brahmesvara temple is facing the east direction. It has Vimana of rekha order and the Jagamohana of Pidha order. It is a Panchayatana temple and the main temple is surrounded by four shrines at four corners. All those shrines as well as the two shrines outside the complex wall of the temple are of rekha order.

The main shrine enshrines the Shiva Linga idol called as Brahmesvara. The four shrines that surround the main shrine also enshrine Shiva Linga idols. However, the two shrines that are located outside do not have any deity. 

The vimana of the main shrine is Pancharatha on plan and Panchangabada in elevation. The Jagamohana is Pancharatha on plan and Triangabada in elevation. The entrance has the relief images of Dwarapalas and Navagraha panel at the top. 

The vimana and the exterior walls are intricately carved with a lot of designs and sculptures. The bada or lower part of the temple is decorated with sculptural motifs and scrollwork. The bada portion also has khakharamundi niches which house the deities such as Nataraja, Ekapada Bhairava, Veenadhara, Ardhanareeswara, Parvati, Kartikeya, etc. Also, there are many beautiful sculptures such as amorous couples, Nayikas found all over the exterior wall. The bada of the Jagamohana is decorated with khakhara mundi niches which house the eight Dikpalas. Two balustrated windows carved with female figures in different graceful postures on either side of the bada portion of the Jagamohana are very attractive. Different animals such as elephants, lions, etc. and various birds are also depicted as sculptures.

The interior of the Vimana is plain whereas the jagamohana ceiling is carved with the lotus medallion surrounded by sculptural friezes of different scenes such as deer hunting, royal procession, etc. Apart from Muktesvara temple, it is yet another temple which is seen rarely with the carvings in the inner ceiling.

Happy travelling.

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