Tower of Victory, Mahasati and Temples of Chittorgarh

Under the reign of Rana Kumbha in mid 15th century Chittorgarh reached its cultural zenith. It was also the apex of territorial expansion by the Mewar as a whole. He is credited with construction of a number of forts, temples and monuments. None other expresses the accomplishments attained by the Chittor warriors following Rana Kumbha’s victories over the Muslim Sultans armies of Gujarat and Malwa than the Tower of Victory, completed in 1448. Dedicated to Vishnu and exquisitely embellished with carvings from Hindu iconography, the 110-foot high monument affirmed Chittor’s position of power after decades of decline that followed the tragic defeat at the hands of Sultan of Delhi in the early 14th century. The tower is known to Hindus as Vijay Stambha, and it is one of India’s most remarkable memorials.

The tower overlooks the legendary Mahasati, an area of sati stones, the cremation site where funeral pyres of the Chittor royals were lit and where their widows threw themselves into flames committing sati, a voluntary self-immolation, looked upon as a virtue, an act of utter grief, reverence and worship. Adjacent to the Mahasati area is the magnificent. sikhara (spire) of the Samadhisvara Temple, dedicated to Shiva, containing the image of the Three-faced Shiva, the Trimurti Shiva.

Little further to the north from the Mahasati area Rana Kumbha erected two splendid temples, known as Meera and the Kumbha Shayam, both with elegantly carved porticos, massive pillars supporting the roof of the mandapa, the narthex of a Hindu shrine, and sanctums beneath graceful spires.

Following is a short video of images from this impressive part of the Chittorgarh Fort.

More images from the fort of Chittor.

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