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Duladeo Temple, Khajuraho

Khajuraho, a small town in Madhya Pradesh has an important share in the cultural legacy of India because of its temples full of exquisite sculptures. The 85 temples, of which only 25 remain intact now, were built between AD 900 and AD 1130 by the Chandella rulers.

Duladeo temple belongs to the southern group of temples in Khajuraho. It is also called Kunwar Math. Considered to be the latest temple in Khajuraho and dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple consists of a sanctum sanctorum, a vestibule, a maha mandapa (large hall) and a porch.

There are many features that make Duladeo temple different from the other temples of Khajuraho. The maha mandapa of the temple is large and octagonal, with a corbelled, circular ceiling. In its interior, one may see the sculptures of dancing Apsarases (heavenly dancers) and at the top row of its façade there are flying Vidyadharas (celestial beings). However, the rest of the sculptures are stereotyped and overburdened with ornamentation.

Plastically and iconographically, Duladeo temple marks the exhaustion of the remarkable vitality for which the Khajuraho temples are famed. These considerations indicate that the temple was built somewhere between 1100 and 1150 AD.