Bucesvara temple is a simple yet elegant specimen of 12th century of Hoysala architecture. Bucesvara temple is located in the village of Korvangla, 10 km from Hassan city, in Hassan district of Karnataka.
Bucesvara temple was built in 1173 A.D. by a rich officer called Buci (or Buchiraja), to celebrate the coronation of Hoysala King Veera Ballala II.
Shrines of Bucesvara Temple
Bucesvara temple is a "divikuta" (two shrines) that face each other. These shrines are associated by a closed mandapa (hall) and an open mandapa. Consequently, one shrine of Bucesvara temple appears much dimmer in lighting than the other. At the eastern end of the complex of Bucesvara temple is a small shrine whose deity is the Bhairava, a form of the Hindu God that is Lord Shiva or Mahadeva.
Western Shrine of Bucesvara Temple
The western shrine of Bucesvara temple facing the east, containing an image of Lord Surya has a staggered square plan. It is a square with three projections per side, its kalasa which is a decorative water-pot on top of the tower over the shrine and Hoysala crest (warrior stabbing a lion) are intact, and the decorative features on the sikhara, which is known as the tower over shrine and the outer walls are of conventional style by Hoysala standards.
Eastern Shrine of Bucesvara Temple
The eastern shrine of Bucesvara temple contains a Shiva linga. Shiva Linga is the universal symbol of the Hindu God Lord Shiva or Mahadeva. The eastern shrine of Bucesvara temple has a similar plan; a Sukhanasi (called "nose") which is a low protrusion of the tower over the shrine and is built over the vestibule which connects the vimana (cella) to the hall. However its main tower of Bucesvara temple is missing and it is unclear if the tower was a part of the original plan or not.
Decoration of Bucesvara Temple
Bucesvara temple has unique decorative features. It can be said to belong to the "old kind" prevalent even before the Hoysala times. In this type of decoration, below the superstructure (tower), eaves that projects about half a meter runs all around the temple. Below the eaves are decorative miniature towers (the aedicula) on pilasters. The miniature towers (turrets) are in various styles like nagara, dravida, vesara, and bhumija. In the old kind of decoration, there are the large wall images of Hindu deities and their attendants are placed below these decorative towers. These images of Hindu Gods and Goddesses include among others like Lord Bhairava, Goddess Saraswati and Goddess Durga, Maheshvara, Narasimha, Brahma, and Venugopala. Below these images, the base of the wall comprises five different horizontal mouldings, one of which is a row of blocks.
Hall in Bucesvara Temple
There is a large hall in Bucesvara temple. The halls are adjoining. The closed hall is complete in design but the open hall is not. It has no structure above its eaves and provides two side entrances into the temple, the southern entrance being flanked by two small elephant balustrades. The outer wall of the closed hall of Bucesvara temple has, in addition to usual Hindu iconography, some unusual relief depicting animals devouring animals.
Pillars in Bucesvara Temple
The ceiling art of Bucesvara temple in the open hall is of fine quality. The pillars of Bucesvara temple have a glossy finish. The pillars of the hall are bell shaped. This bell shaped hall is a design achieved by turning with lathes.