Shore Temple
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Architect unknown
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Location India   map
Date 750   timeline
Building Type Hindu monument
 Construction System stone
Climate desert
Context seaside
Style Hindu
Notes Shore Temple of the Seven Pagodas at Mahabalipuram. five story pyramid, 60 ft. high




Axonometric Drawing

Elevation Drawing

Plan Drawing

Plan Drawing


Section Drawing

Discussion Shore Temple Commentary

"The Shore Temple of the Seven Pagodas at Mahabalipuram dates from the 8th century AD. This five-storeyed Hindu monument is a pyramidal structure 60 ft high and 50 ft square at the base. In front is a small temple, which was the original porch."

John Julius Norwich, ed. Great Architecture of the World. p27.

"The five-storey Shore Temples at Mamallapuram...are built in stone masonry, not carved from the solid, and date from the first quarter of the eighth century. Each has a garbhagriha in which the Sivalinga is housed, and a small mandapa, the whole surrounded by a heavy outer wall with little space between for circulation. At the rear are two shrines facing opposite directions. The inner shrine of Ksatriyasimnesvara is reached from the ambulatory passage while the other, dedicated to Vishnu, faces the outside. The outer wall of the shrine to Vishnu and the inner side of the boundary wall are extensively sculptured."

—Sir Banister Fletcher. A History of Architecture. p 744.

Sources on Shore Temple

Mario Bussagli. Oriental Architecture/1: India, Indonesia, Indochina. translated by John Shepley. New York: Electra/Rizzoli, 1989. NA1460.B8713 1989. exterior color photo, plate VIII.

Sir Banister Fletcher. A History of Architecture. Boston: Butterworths, 1987. ISBN 0-408-01587-X. NA200.F63 1987. discussion p744. — The classic text of architectural history. Expanded 1996 edition available at

John Julius Norwich, ed. Great Architecture of the World. New York: Random House, 1975. ISBN 0-394-49887-9. NA200.G76. discussion, p27. plan, p27. Reprint edition: Da Capo Press, April 1991. ISBN 0-3068-0436-0. — An accessible, inspiring and informative overview of world architecture, with lots of full-color cutaway drawings, and clear explanations. Available at

Henri Stierlin. Comprendre L'Architecture Universelle. Paris: Office du Livre S.A. Fribourg (suisse), 1977. axonometric drawing, p268. elevation drawing, p268. section drawing, p268. plan drawing, p268. roof plan drawing, p268.

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about Shore Temple


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