Heritage of the Kakatiyas: Hanamkonda, Warangal, Palampet, Ghanpur
The Kakatiyas were the most powerful kings of Telangana during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The 200 or so years of their rule marks the highpoint in the prosperity, culture and art traditions of this part of the Deccan. Nowhere is this better seen than in the Thousand-Pillared Temple of Hanamkonda and the Ramappa Temple of Palampet, both of which preserve a profusion of elaborate carvings. Though the great Svayambhu Shiva temple in Warangal that served as a dynastic shrine for the Kakatiyas was later demolished, its four ceremonial entrance portals, or toranas, still stand, giving a glimpse into the imposing architecture of the era. That the Kakatiyas also invested in agriculture is evident from the vast reservoirs, or cheruvus, that they constructed, providing much needed water to local farmers in the past and down to the present day.
Authored by Phillip B. Wagoner, a specialist on the literature and art traditions of Telangana, and illustrated with specially commissioned photographs by Surendra Kumar, this guidebook is the first to describe the sites and monuments associated with the Kakatiyas, their contemporaries and successors in and around the twin cities of Hanamkonda-Warangal. Many of these locations are easily reachable as a day trip from Hyderabad and it is hoped that this guidebook will prove informative and serviceable to scholars and students, as well as to general visitors.
Phillip B. Wagoner
Phillip B. Wagoner is Professor of Art History and Archaeology at Wesleyan University, Connecticut, where he has taught since 1987. His research has encompassed architectural history, cultural history, numismatics, and Telugu historiographical writing. His books include Tidings of the King: A Translation and Ethnohistorical Analysis of the Rayavacakamu (Honolulu, 1993); Power, Memory, Architecture: Contested Sites on India’s Deccan Plateau, 1300-1600 (with Richard Eaton, Delhi, 2014); and the co-edited volume Palimpsests: Buildings, Sites, Time (Turnhout, 2017).