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Rajasthan Pilgrimages » Abhaneri Temple, Jaipur
About Abhaneri Temple, Jaipur

Abhaneri is a small town village, situated at a distance of 95 km from Jaipur, on Jaipur-Agra road. The place is popular for the amazing 'Baoris' (step wells) and Harshat Mata Temple. The village of Abhaneri is believed to be established by the King Raja Chand. Originally Abhaneri was named as Abha Nagri, which means the city of brightness, but due to mispronunciation of the term, it is changed to the present name.

In the present day, this city of brightness is in ruins; still it attracts tourists from across the globe. Abhaneri is prominent for 'Baoris', which are the unique invention of the natives for harvesting rain water. Amongst the other step wells, Chand Baori is the most popular one. This colossal step well is located in front of the Harshat Mata Temple. Chand Baori is one of India's deepest and largest step wells. The huge tank with delicate carvings is certainly delightful to the eyes.

Step wells are the unique concept of India. These big tanks were used as cool places of resort and water reservoir in parched days. It was a ritual to wash hands and feet before visiting the temple. Adjoining the Chand Baori, there is a temple, dedicated to Harshat Mata. This temple serves as the other tourist attraction of Abhaneri. Raised during the 10th century, the wrecks of the temple still boast of the architectural and sculptural styles of ancient India.

Your Abhaneri tours will remain inconclusive without paying visits to some of the popular tourist destinations that the village boasts of. The Harshat Mata Temple is one of the must-visit attractions in Abhaneri. Harshat Mata is held in great reverence as the goddess of mirth and happiness. The locals strongly believe that Harshat Mata, depicted in a jolly mood, imparts her mirth and happiness to the entire village folk. The temple that dates back to the 9th century has borne the brunt of time and now stands in a dilapidated state. Certain parts of the temple still remain intact and these comprise of sanctuary walls, terrace and the columned mandapa or forechamber. The temple walls are graced with carved niches that in turn decorated with the images of other deities. The temple brilliantly exemplifies the early medieval architecture in Rajasthan. The columns and the temple walls are exquisitely adorned with scenes of dance, music, love and sports.

Main Attractions Abhaneri Temple

Harshat Mata Temple

Today Abhaneri is mainly famous for the Harshat Mata Temple belonging to the 9th century. of course, only portions of this ancient shrine remain now, like the sanctuary walls, terrace and something of the columned mandapa (forechamber). The sanctum, shorn of its superstructure, is enclosed in an ambulatory and is pancharatha (with five offsets) in structure. The walls have carved nichés in which are images of other deities.

These worn out images indicate that the temple was originally dedicated to Vishnu, the Creator of the Hindu trinity of Creator-Preserver-Destroyer. The architectural details of the terrace basement is more or less complete, showing friezes of geometric ornament and miniature nichés with sculptures of seated deities and amorous couples. The columns and walls are adorned with scenes of dance, music, sport and love, although majorly damaged now. Some of the better panels have been shifted to the Archaeological Museum, Amber and the Central Museum, Jaipur. The sanctum now enshrines an image of the four-armed deity Harasiddhi, locally called Harshat Mata. Many images of Hindu deities have been found around the place which are being preserved by the Archaelogical Survey of India. A mela (fair) is held near the temple in the month of Chaitra (March-April) every year.

Harshat Mata is considered to be the goddess of joy and happiness. As per the beliefs, the goddess is always cheerful, who imparts her joy and happiness to the whole village. The temple is worth visiting for its amazing architecture and that too, which belongs to the medieval India. Abhaneri has a glorious past and this hoary magnetism of the place, attracts tourists to its threshold, from all over the world.

Chand Baoli-A Stepwell

Near the Harshat Mata Temple is the stepwell Chand Baoli, belonging to the 11th century AD. The desert kingdom of Rajasthan has many such tanks which served as community centres, and constructing them was considered an act of great generosity and benevolence. These baolis or stepwells were no ordinary structures; they were marvels of architecture. The Chand Baoli has beautifully carved panels inserted into the sides. The steps, in sets of 4 or 5, are in the shape of an inverted 'V'. The carved stone pillars, which are somewhat damaged now, were once strong enough for supporting pulleys to draw water. Several storeyed verandahs surround this beautiful stepwell.
 
 
 
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