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Journal of Indian Philosophy and Religion

Volume 24, December 2019

Hema Keyal, Yuan Shu Wan
Pages 108-132

Shikhara Style Temples and its Importance in Nepal

The design of Hindu temple follows the design of vastupurusha-mandala as described in several Hindu texts on architecture. The design of temple is divided into ground plan and vertical alignment, the superstructure. Herein the present study, our focus is on architecture of the superstructure, especially Shikhara style of superstmcture, in the temple of Nepal. Shikhara style architecture came into Nepal from Lidia over a millennium ago. The purpose of this research is to understand the significance of Shikhara Style temples in the capital of Nepal, the Kathmandu valley. The first segment of the study reports the overall architecture of Hindu temple and then the common styles of architecture of superstructure (vertical alignment/tower) applied in building the temples in Nepal, which involves the Shikhara Style, the Pagoda Style, and the Stupa Style. The Shikhara style architecture is described in detail while other two are briefly discussed. The second segment of the study introduces some of the recognized temples of the Kathmandu valley that have Shikhara style architecture. And finally summing up everything, the conclusion of this research tries to recognize, acknowledge and bring to the fore the significance of Shikhara style temples in Nepal and also wrap the research by understanding the concept of architecture through pre-ancient perspective.

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