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Mahabalipuram(məhä`bəlĭpo͝orəm), town, Tamil Nadu state, SE India, a coastal resort on the Coromandel Coast. Archaeological remains there represent some of the earliest-known examples of Dravidian architecture (c.7th cent. A.D.) in India. Under the patronage of the PallavaPallava
, S Indian dynasty that established its capital at Kanchipuram in the 4th cent. A.D. Of obscure origin, it grew wealthy and strong and is most noted for its patronage of Dravidian architecture, especially for the so-called Seven Pagodas of Mahabalipuram.
..... Click the link for more information. dynasty, numerous temples, hewn from granite hillocks, were carved. The site is often called the Seven Pagodas because of the high pinnacles of seven of its temples, six of which were said to have been submerged by the sea. During the tsunami of Dec., 2004, eyewitnesses said they saw the offshore ruins exposed by the retreating waters; previously unknown ruins onshore were revealed when the waves removed several feet of sand. The town is also called Mamallapuram.
(also Mamallapuram, Mahabalipur), a village in the state of Tamil Nadu (India); formerly a flourishing port city. Seventh-century monuments include the Shore Temple, ten mandapas (multicolumned prayer halls) carved into a cliff, a giant basrelief of the descent of the Ganges from the Himalayas, the ratha of Ganesa, and a complex of five rathas (each named after a character in the Mahabharata epic—Dharmaraja, Arjuna, Bhima, Sahadeva Nakula, and Draupadi).