This post is mostly a photographic presentation of monuments from Karnataka, Bangalore (Bengaluru), India.
Bangalore, officially known as Bengaluru, is the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka. The region of modern-day Bangalore was part of several successive South Indian kingdoms. Between the fourth and the tenth centuries, the Bangalore region was ruled by the Western Ganga Dynasty of Karnataka, the first dynasty to set up effective control over the region.
The Western Gangas ruled the region initially as a sovereign power (350–550), and later as feudatories of the Chalukyas of Badami, followed by the Rashtrakutas until the tenth century. The Begur Nageshwara Temple was commissioned around 860, during the reign of the Western Ganga King Ereganga Nitimarga I and extended by his successor Nitimarga II. Around 1004, during the reign of Raja Raja Chola I, the Cholas defeated the Western Gangas under the command of the crown prince Rajendra Chola I, and captured Bangalore. During this period, the Bangalore region witnessed the migration of many groups — warriors, administrators, traders, artisans, pastorals, cultivators, and religious personnel from Tamil Nadu and other Kannada speaking regions. The Chokkanathaswamy temple at Domlur, the Aigandapura complex near Hesaraghatta, Mukthi Natheshwara Temple at Binnamangala, Choleshwara Temple at Begur, Someshwara Temple at Madiwala, date from the Chola era.
In 1117, the Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana defeated the Cholas in the Battle of Talakad in south Karnataka, and extended its rule over the region. Vishnuvardhana expelled the Cholas from all parts of Mysore state. By the end of the 13th century, Bangalore became a source of contention between two warring cousins, the Hoysala ruler Veera Ballala III of Halebidu and Ramanatha, who administered from the Hoysala held territory in Tamil Nadu. Veera Ballala III had appointed a civic head at Hudi (now within Bangalore Municipal Corporation limits), thus promoting the village to the status of a town. After Veera Ballala III’s death in 1343, the next empire to rule the region was the Vijayanagara Empire, which itself saw the rise of four dynasties, the Sangamas (1336–1485), the Saluvas (1485–1491), the Tuluvas (1491–1565), and the Aravidu (1565–1646). During the reign of the Vijayanagara Empire, Achyuta Deva Raya of the Tuluva Dynasty raised the Shivasamudra Dam across the Arkavati river at Hesaraghatta, whose reservoir is the present city’s supply of regular piped water.
Modern Bangalore was begun in 1537 by a vassal of the Vijayanagara Empire, Kempe Gowda I, who aligned with the Vijayanagara empire to campaign against Gangaraja (whom he defeated and expelled to Kanchi), and who built a mud-brick fort for the people at the site that would become the central part of modern Bangalore. Kempe Gowda was restricted by rules made by Achuta Deva Raya, who feared the potential power of Kempe Gowda and did not allow a formidable stone fort. Kempe Gowda referred to the new town as his “gandubhūmi” or “Land of Heroes”. Within the fort, the town was divided into smaller divisions—each called a “pete”. The town had two main streets—Chikkapeté Street, which ran east-west, and Doddapeté Street, which ran north-south. Their intersection formed the Doddapeté Square—the heart of Bangalore. Kempe Gowda I’s successor, Kempe Gowda II, built four towers that marked Bangalore’s boundary. During the Vijayanagara rule, many saints and poets referred to Bangalore as “Devarāyanagara” and “Kalyānapura” or “Kalyānapuri” (“Auspicious City”).
After the fall of the Vijayanagara Empire in 1565 in the Battle of Talikota, Bangalore’s rule changed hands several times. Kempe Gowda declared independence, then in 1638, a large Adil Shahi Bijapur army led by Ranadulla Khan and accompanied by his second in command Shāhji Bhōnslé defeated Kempe Gowda III, and Bangalore was given to Shāhji as a jagir (feudal estate). In 1687, the Mughal general Kasim Khan, under orders from Aurangzeb, defeated Ekoji I, son of Shāhji, and sold Bangalore to Chikkadevaraja Wodeyar (1673–1704), the then ruler of the Kingdom of Mysore for three lakh rupees. After the death of Krishnaraja Wodeyar II in 1759, Hyder Ali, Commander-in-Chief of the Mysore Army, proclaimed himself the de facto ruler of the Kingdom of Mysore. Hyder Ali is credited with building the Delhi and Mysore gates at the northern and southern ends of the city in 1760. The kingdom later passed to Hyder Ali’s son Tipu Sultan. Hyder and Tipu contributed towards the beautification of the city by building Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens in 1760. Under them, Bangalore developed into a commercial and military centre of strategic importance.
The Bangalore fort was captured by the British armies under Lord Cornwallis on 21 March 1791 during the Third Anglo-Mysore War.
(Important Note: ALL photographs of this article added to the sourced texts by NovoScriptorium after kind courtesy of our friend Ben Lee – ALL photographs originally taken by Ben Lee)