February 21, 2024

Day-10 Answer Writing Challenge : Model Answer

Question: Describe the influence of various dynasties and rulers on the temple architecture in Himachal Pradesh.  [120 words, 8 marks]


Understanding of question:
IntroductionDifferent Architecture style in Himachal
Main BodyInfluence of Rajput Rulers

Sikh’s Influence

Mughal’s Influence

Tibetan Influence



The state is home to diverse cultures, and subsequently has strong influences of Tibetan, British, and Mughal art and architecture. The native architecture of Himachal Pradesh is determined mostly by the climatic conditions and vernacular materials. The use of locally available stone rammed earth, mud, bricks, and wood is done in accordance with the local construction techniques that help provide structural stability in the earthquake-prone state. The ‘Kath- Kuni’ is a traditional construction technique that involves laying courses of wood and rubble masonry alternatively.

Influence of Rajput Rulers: After the Guptas, Chandelas of Kannauj, Gurjara Pratiharas and the Pala rulers of Bengal & Bihar rules the plains. Whenever they lost their power in plains, they hid in Himalayas and settled their rule there. When they left the hills, they appointed their kith and kins there. They introduced Nagara style of temple architecture with them in mountains. E.g Bajaura , Lakshmi Narayan Temple etc

Sikh’s Influence: In the foothills of Himalayas, a powerful empire rose under Sikh military commanders and then under the reign of Raja Ranjit Singh. All Sikh rulers had great faith in the divinity of the temples. Many such rulers gave grants or renovated the temples in Himachal. Ex: Dome of the Jwalamukhi temple was gold plated by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Reconstruction of the Brajeshwari temple by Desha Singh Majithia.

Mughal’s Influence: Pahari rulers were under the patronage of Mughals for a long time and therefore the impact of their architecture was quite obvious. the dome style of architecture, jaalidar windows and doors and the calligraphic art was originally attributed to Mughals which was later adopted in the temple architecture of Himachal Pradesh.

Tibetan Infulence: Tibetan style of temple architecture has distinct features, wherein Pagoda style is popular under the distinct Tibetan culture. Many monasteries, Gompas and temples adorn the beauty of the temple architecture of the Himachal Pradesh. Some fine examples are Key Monastery, Tabo Monastery ,Guru ghantal and Trilokinath temple.

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