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Aventures divines de Kṛṣṇa : la līlā et les traditions narratives des temples cōḻa

Arts asiatiques
PERSEE Program
Publication Date
DOI: 10.3406/arasi.2002.1479


A group of around six hundred representations adorning six Cola, Saiva temples of the 10th century and a Vaisnava temple of the 11th century allows us to try to define the date of the appearance of the Bhagavata-purana and to observe the closeness of the links between the narrative and Vishnuism. The base of these ancient Cola temples contains between one and three friezes which are made up of small panels sculpted with low-reliefs illustrating the play of gods. Dancing Sivas and fighting goddesses are situated side by side the forms of Visnu coming down to earth, which constitute the majority of the representations, organized in veritable narrative cycles, one panel following the other. Thus these series of images correspond to a golden divine legend, coming down through a textual tradition which allows us to identify these panels. The representations give precious information about the corresponding texts, and the study of the Krsna devoted cycles leads us to define the lineage of the Bhagavata-purana, which does not seem to have been illustrated before the beginning of the 11th century.

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