Brief History of Koppal
The history of Koppal can be traced back to the kingdoms of Shathavahanas, Gangas, Hoysalas and Chalukya Dynasties. The name of the district i.e. "KOPPAL" is found in the poetic work of the great poet Kavirajamarga (During King Nrupathunga's time of 814-878 A.D.) as "VIDITHA MAHA KOPANA NAGARA". During Ashoka's period, the Jainism gained greater momentum in this region. Therefore, it was called "Jainkashi". In twelth century A.D. Veerashaivaism of Social Reformer Basaveshwara became popular. The present Gavi Math of Koppal has great attraction.
Anegundi of Gangavathi Taluk was the first capital of great Vijayanagara Dynasty. The old palace and fort still exist where annual festival called "Anegundi Utsava" is being celebrated in a befitting manner every year. The other important historical places of Koppal district are Itagi, Kukanoor, Madinoor, Indrakeela Parvatha, Kanakagiri, Pura, Chikkabenakal, Hirebenakal & Huligi.
Places of Interest
ANEGUNDI is in Gangavathi Taluk and is one of the most ancient places in the
district, meaning in Kannada "elephant pit"said to have been
the place where the elephants of the Vijayanagara
kings were kept, is situated on the left bank of the river Tungabhadra, just
opposite the ruined capital of the Vijayanagara
empire. Anegundi has been identified with a part of
in Yelburga taluk,
is about three miles from the south of the Bannikoppa
railway station on the Gadag-Koppal line. This
place is famous for the Mahadeva temple,
which is one of the finest of the later Chalukyan
temples. The temple, which faces east consists of a
shrine with an ante-chamber, a closed hall with porches on either side of it
towards the north and the south, and the pillared hall which is open at the
sides. The pillared hall was originally supported by 68 pillars. Of these, 26
are large ones, standing on the floor and forming the main support of the
roof. The remaining, which are shorter, stand on the stone bench surrounding
the hall and carry the sloping eaves.
The large columns
are of different designs, but are arranged symmetrically with regard to the
shape and pattern of each. The four central ones, very rich in design, have
angular carvings arranged vertically both in the shafts and capitals.
KINNAL, in Koppal taluk, about eight miles from Koppal, is noted for manufacture of toys and images by Chitragars. Weaving, preparing of combs from horns and pottery are the other industries of this place.
KANAKAGIRI, in Gangavathi taluk, is an ancient place situated on the Gangavati-Lingasugur road, about 13 miles from Gangavati. Kanakagiri means a "Hill of God" and its old name was Swarnagiri with the same meaning. This place was probably the head quarters of the southern viceroyalty of the Mauryas. It is said that Kanaka Muni, a saint, performed penance at this place. The place has several temples built by the Naiks of Kanakgiri, the chief among them being the Kanakachalapathi temple, which is a large one and is of considerable architectural charm; it is a fine specimen of soutn Indian architecture of the Vijayanagara times and has spacious halls and massive pillars. The gopuras and walls have well-executed sculpture. There are in this temple elegantly made statues of Rajas and Ranis in black polished stone and several large wooden statues and plaster models of the mythological figures. On the ourskirts of the town, there is a fine and well-designed royal bath constructed by Venkatappa Naik. According to a popular saying current in the area, "people with eyes must see Kanakagiri and those with legs, Hampi", which means that the Kanakagiri temples are a delightful feast for the eyes and that one must be prepared to go avout rirelessly to see the sprawling ruined capital of Vijayanagara (Hampi). An annual jatra (Fair) associated with the Kanakachalapathi temple, which is held in the month of Phalguna, is largely attended.
KOPPAL, is the District
head quarters and is situated on the left bank of Hirehalla,
a tributary of the Tungabhadra, and is on the Guntakal-Hubli
railway line. Koppal is situated at the foot of a rock, the later being
crowned by a fort.
There is another
range of hills to the west, the highest spur of which is called Palkigundu, 2,399 ft. in height. There is another
spur on the east, called Gavimatha, (shown
at the right side) which is about 50 ft. above the surrounding land. There is
a third spur to the south; its height above sea level is 1,980 ft. and is
called Bahadur Bande.
The fort rock is in the middle. The Gavimath spur
contains four caves and a modern temple, with Lingayat
Gurus. There are also some jain samadhis
opposite one of these caves. The hill commands a beautiful view. ( Right side
picture shows the Gavimatha situated on hill ) The
annual Gavisiddeshwara Jatra (Fair) held here about the month of January
is the biggest in the District.
KUKANOOR, in Yelburga taluk, is a small town lying seven miles due north of Bannikoppa station on the Guntakal-Hubli railway line. The town, though now small, was an important place in the early and mediaeval days and is rich in antiquarian remains of the later Chalukyan style of architecture and these buildings range from the 8th to the 13th century A.D. and illustrate the building tendencies of the age. The group of temples that represents the early Chalukyan school is called teh Navalinga group. Two other important temples are those of Kalleshvara and Mallikarjuna. The Kalleshwara temple is a fine example of the Chalukyan style and is in good condition. The original form of the Mallikarjuna temple, however, cannot be fully made out; the shrine and the mantapa also have been altered and built over in recent years. The Kalleshwara temple contains one Kannada inscription, while the other has three, one of them recording the date of construction of the temple in the 12th century A.D. But the most important temple from the relegious point of view is that of Mahamaya; (left side picture shows Mahamaya temple) it is in the same enclosure in which the Navalinga temple is situated, a building of considerable dimensions but devoid of architectural merits.
in Koppal taluk,
about eight kilo meters from Hospet, on the Hubli-Guntakal
railway line and about 32 kilometers from Koppal
District headquarters. It has become an important place now, especially due
to Tungabhadra dam ( shown in right side picture ).
in Kushtagi taluk, about the five
miles from Tavargera,
is noted for its
fine and spacious