Khajuraho Group of Monuments
The complex of Khajuraho represents a unique artistic creation, as much for its highly original architecture as for the sculpted decor of a surprising quality made up of a mythological repertory of numerous scenes of amusements of which not the least known are the scenes, susceptible to various interpretations, sacred or profane.
Khajuraho is one of the capitals of the Chandella rulers, a dynasty of Rajput origin which came into power at the beginning of the 10th century, and reached its apogee between 950 and 1050. Of the 85 temples which were constructed at Khajuraho during the Chandella period (and which were still resplendent: when the great traveller Ibn Battuta noted them in 1335), 22 still exist, disseminated within an area of about 6 km2.
As, monuments of two distinct religions, Brahminism and Jainism, the temples of Khajuraho are nonetheless distinguished by a common typology: they comprise an elevated substructure, over which rises the body of the richly decorated building, the 'jangha', covered with several registers of sculpted panels on to which open-work galleries are opened. This is crowned by a series of bundled towers with curvilinear contours, the Sikharas.
The most important group of monuments is massed in the western zone, not far from the archaeological museum, including the temples of Varaha, Lakshmana, Matangeshwara, Kandariya, Mahadeva Chitragupta, Chopra Tank, Parvati, Vishwanatha and Nandi. But the east and south groups also comprise noteworthy complexes (the temples of Ghantai, Parshvanath, Adinath, Shantinath, Dulhadeo, Chaturbhuja).