Early Middle Ages

Early Middle Ages (550 CE–1200 CE)

Main articles: Hindu architecture and Hindu temple architecture
Kailasa temple, Ellora, the largest rock-cut Hindu temple.[76]
South Indian temple architecture—visible as a distinct tradition during the 7th century CE.[77]
Māru-Gurjara temple architecture originated somewhere in the 6th century in and around areas of Rajasthan. Māru-Gurjara Architecture shows the deep understanding of structures and refined skills of Rajasthani craftsmen of the bygone era. Māru-Gurjara Architecture has two prominent styles Maha-Maru and Maru-Gurjara. 
According to M. A. Dhaky, Maha-Maru style developed primarily in Marudesa, Sapadalaksha, Surasena and parts of Uparamala whereas Maru-Gurjara originated in Medapata, Gurjaradesa-Arbuda, Gurjaradesa-Anarta and some areas of Gujarat.[78] Scholars such as George Michell, M.A. Dhaky, Michael W. Meister and U.S. Moorti believe that Māru-Gurjara Temple Architecture is entirely Western Indian architecture and is quite different from the North Indian Temple architecture.[79] There is a connecting link between Māru-Gurjara Architecture and Hoysala Temple Architecture. In both of these styles architecture is treated sculpturally.[80] Regional styles include Architecture of Karnataka, Kalinga architecture, Dravidian architecture, Western Chalukya architecture, and Badami Chalukya Architecture.
The South Indian temple consists essentially of a square-chambered sanctuary topped by a superstructure, tower, or spire and an attached pillared porch or hall (maṇḍapa or maṇṭapam), enclosed by a peristyle of cells within a rectangular court. The external walls of the temple are segmented by pilasters and carry niches housing sculpture. The superstructure or tower above the sanctuary is of the kūṭina type and consists of an arrangement of gradually receding stories in a pyramidal shape. Each story is delineated by a parapet of miniature shrines, square at the corners and rectangular with barrel-vault roofs at the centre.
North Indian temples showed increased elevation of the wall and elaborate spire by the 10th century.[81] Richly decorated temples—including the complex at Khajuraho—were constructed in Central India.[81] Indian traders brought Indian architecture to South east Asia through various trade routes.[82] Grandeur of construction, beautiful sculptures, delicate carvings, high domes, gopuras and extensive courtyards were the features of temple architecture in India. Examples include the Lingaraj Temple at Bhubaneshwar in Odisha, Sun Temple at Konark in Odisha, Brihadeeswarar Temple at Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu.

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