Hindu Temple Model

possibly 19th century


Gift of Michaela Mahoney in memory of Col. William C. and Virginia E. Mahoney


This richly carved sculpture replicates a structure called a gopura or gate in front of Indian temple complexes and done in a vimana or tower style. The gopura it most closely resembles is in Cidambaram, in Tamil Nadu province of Southern India, which was completed in 1271.

A pantheon of Indian divinities adorns it. The temple was probably dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, as he and many of his followers can be identified here. A special favorite of children and adults alike is the elephant-headed god, Ganesha, on the lower level.

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