Megheswar Temple – Bhubaneswar

Located on Tankapani Road and set beside a large tank, Megheswar (also known as Meghesvar) Temple was the eastern-most ancient temple I visited in the old city of Bhubaneswar.

An inscription found here has provided a very tight date for the original construction of the temple. The inscription states that the temple was built by the instructions of Swapnesvara, who was brother-in-law of the Ganga King Rajaraja.

The inscription is dated to the reign of Rajaraja’s brother, Anangabhima, who was king for just three years between 1192 and 1195 A.D.

Considered one of the first nava-ratha plan temples in Odisha, originally the exterior would have been heavily adorned with sculpted images, but sadly now only a few remain in-situ and many have been damaged.

Megheswar is a living temple, enshrining a Shiva Linga. The exterior walls have carvings of dancing females, various animals such as lions, elephants and yalis, birds, scroll work, and Shiva adopting numerous postures.

Some of the best images are around the Jagamohana entrance, with naga-nagi pillars flanking the doorway and Navagraha above, each of the nine celestial bodies of the universe set within a separate niche.

Megheswar Temple is very close to Bhaskareswar and Brameswara Temples,. The three can be easily combined for a couple of hours exploration of the more interesting temples in the east of the old city in Bhubaneswar.

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