Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Hampi, India

Here is another UNESCO card for today, showing the Stone Chariot in Hampi.

Hampi is a village located within the ruins of Vijayanagara empire, housing the Virupaksha Empire. As the village is at the original centre of Vijayanagara, it is sometimes confused with this ruined city. The Vijayanagara ruins are listed as the Group of Monuments at Hampi on the UNESCO whs.
The name "Hampi" is an anglicized version of the Kannada Hampe (derived from Pampa). Over the years, it has also been referred to as Vijayanagara and Virupakshapura (from Virupaksha, the patron deity of the Vijayanagara rulers).
Hampi formed one of the cores of the capital of the Vijayanagara empire from 1336 to 1565. It was destroyed by Muslim sultans. Hampi was chosen because of its strategic location, bounded by the torrential Thungabhadra river on one side and surrounded by defensible hills on the other three sides.
The site is of great importance in terms of architecture and historical significance. The demography is abundant with large stones which have been utilized to make larger than life statues of God.

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