Temple Architecture

As human beings began to fear and respect the forces of nature, they also started worshipping them. Man personified these forces so that the concept of ‘god’ took form in people’s minds. The gods in their human forms came to be housed as idols in structures called temples.The temples in India developed in every region of the country, often the geographical, climatic, ethnic, racial, historical and linguistic aspects of the region had a greater part to play in shaping the style of the temples in India


UPSC Prelims 2012 Question

The Nagara, the Dravida and the Vesara are the

a) three main racial groups of the Indian subcontinent.
b) Three main linguistic divisions in to which the languages of India can be classified
c) three main styles of Indian temple architecture
d) three main musical Gharanas prevalent in India


Check Solution
Solution C


Ancient Indian temples are classified in three broad types. This classification is based on different architectural styles, employed in the construction of these temples. The three types are- Nagara, Vesara and Dravida. Nagara style temples are found in Northern India, Vesara style temples in region between Vindhyas and the river Krishna and Dravida style temples are found between Godavari and Krishna rivers. Hence, option C is correct

  • Nagaraor North Indian Temple Style in North India it is common for an entire temple to be built on a stone platform with steps leading up to it. Further, unlike in South India it does not usually have elaborate boundary walls or gateways.
  • Vesarais one of a number of terms for a distinct stylistic tradition of Indian Hindu temple architecture primarily used in the Deccan, parts of North India and Central India, between the Vindhyas and the river Krishna.
  • Dravidian architectureor the South Indian temple style is an architectural idiom in Hindu temple architecture that emerged in the southern part of the Indian subcontinent or South India and in Sri Lanka, reaching its final form by the sixteenth century.