Note: The diagram shown in the image was extracted from the ASI (Archaeological Survey of India) document on display at the Archaeological Museum located near the Badami cave temples.
As you can see from the image, the ground plan has a room in the middle of the back wall, four parallel aisles, and a flight of steps at the entrance.
Cave – 1 is built like a temple, and its design conforms to the mantapa style architecture prevalent in Southern India. As per this design, the garbhagriha (sanctum sanctorum), which houses a Shivalinga, is the room carved out of the back wall. The anatarala (ante-chamber) is the aisle in front of the garbhagriha. Check the view showing the garbhagriha entrance and pillars of the antarala.
The sabhamantapa (main hall) consists of two aisles in front of the antarala, and the mukhamantapa (verandah) consists of the aisle in front of the sabhamantapa.
The steps at the entrance lead to a small platform which is in front of the mukhamantapa. Check the facade and entrance of Cave – 1. On the right side of the mukhamantapa, there is a small cave and next to it is a large-size relief of Nataraja carved on a wall extended outside of the cave.
Cave – 1 Images
– Cave – 1 Facade and Entrance
– Right side view: Nataraja performing Tandava Nritya
– Left side view: Dwarapala, Shiva-Parvati, Vrishabha-Kunjara
– Mukhamantapa right wall: Ardhanarishvara and Sage Bhringi
– Mukhamantapa left wall: Harihara – Fusion of Shiva and Vishnu
– Mukhamantapa ceiling: Nagaraja
– Interior: Garghagriha and pillars
– Garbhagriha: Shivalinga
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