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Gomateshwara Bahubali Statue at Shravanabelagola: A Wonder

There is a unique statue of Gomateshwar, also known as Bahubali (Armstrong), in southern state of Karnataka in India. The uniqueness of this statue is that this is the world's highest monolithic statue without external support. The statue is 17.6 Meters (58.8 feet) high, situated on a hill called Indragiri (also known as Vindhyagiri) at Shravanabelagola town.

This statue is historical one, carved in a single granite stone in 983 C.E. The statue is in standing pose, naked, attractive and very proportional. It was carved by Chaavundaraay, a General of king Marsinha of Gang dynasty.

Shravanabelagola is a pilgrimage center for Jains, the followers of Jainism from ancient time. This is the place where Chandragupt Maurya, the first emperor of Mauryan dynasty spent his last days as a Jain ascetic. His Guru Acharya Bhadrabahu also spent his last days here.

Gomateshwara Statue at Shravanabelagola

Gomateshwara Statue at Shravanabelagola

Historical Importance of Gomateshwar Statue

This statue has historical importance. Important for historians, archaeologists as well as for linguists. The statue is evidence of spread of Jainism in south India, and the royal patronage to it. For archeologists, the statue is important because it is the greatest presentation of Indian sculpture.

For linguists also, the statue is important, as inscriptions in three different languages are written on the base stone near the feet of the statue. The three languages are Tamil, Kannada and Marathi. The Marathi inscription is the oldest inscription in this language. all the three inscriptions are important for knowing the history and evolution of related languages.

Oldest inscription in Marathi language, on the stone near the left feet of Gomateshwar statue

Oldest inscription in Marathi language, on the stone near the left feet of Gomateshwar statue

Inscription in old Kannada language at Shravanabelagola

Inscription in old Kannada language at Shravanabelagola

Religious Importance of Gomateshwar Statue

The statue is very important for Jains. Because of this statue, this ancient place got more importance as Jains and others from all over India got attracted to this place. In recent few decades, the statue has become an attraction for worldwide tourists, especially from Europe and America. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people come here to see the wonder.

Every 12th year, there is a big ceremony called Mahamastakabhishek. In that year, about 2 millions of people visit this place.

Mahamastakabhishek ceremony of Gomateshwar statue

Mahamastakabhishek ceremony of Gomateshwar statue


Anil555 from Bangalore, India on November 11, 2013:

Recently heard news that there has been quarrying activity near Bahubali statue, how to stop it and how to preserve for future generation.

Has it got UNESCO tag?

Mahaveer Sanglikar (author) from Pune, India on June 30, 2012:

Thanks Ankush for reading the Hub.

ANKUSH CHOUGULE on June 29, 2012:


Mahaveer Sanglikar (author) from Pune, India on April 18, 2012:

You are always welcome.

cebutouristspot from Cebu on April 17, 2012:

I heard that India is rich in historic monument/Statue. I wish that one day I can get to stand in front of this work of arts. Thanks for sharing

Mahaveer Sanglikar (author) from Pune, India on March 08, 2012:


Thank you for reading and commenting on the Hub.

rai2722 on November 02, 2011:

Very interesting hub. Thanks for sharing.

raakachi from Madurai / Tamilnadu / India on November 02, 2011:

fine! and well presented.thanks for sharing!

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