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Photographer's Note

These are the Pancha Rathas, "five chariots", a monument complex in the small town of Mahabalipuram in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

Mahabalipuran is one of the wonders of Indian cultural heritage, classified by the UNESCO as a world heritage site for its abundance of temples and monuments from the 7th and 8th centuries AD.

The Pancha Rathas may look like temples, but they should rather be described as sculptures, carved out of solid granite rocks. They were created during the late 7th century and were the first of their kind in India. After the death of King Narasimhavarman I in 680 they were not finished and were never consecrated, according to Wikipedia.

Mahabalipuram, also frequently known as Mamallapuram, is located 58 km south of Chennai (Madras) by the Bay of Bengal. I remember it as one of the nicest and most interesting places in India.

I have scanned this photo from 1987 from a Kodachrome slide. Here is a larger version.

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Additional Photos by Gert Holmertz (holmertz) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3358 W: 298 N: 6993] (37127)
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