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050 / The spire of the Kandariya Mahadeo Temple at Khajuraho

The stunning Kandariya Mahadeo temple at Khajuraho was built by Chandela king Vidhyadhar in the early 1000s, as a sign of gratitude to the Hindu god Shiva for helping his kingdom ward off repeated invasions by the notorious Mahmud of Ghazni. The defining feature of the temple remains its soaring spire, composed of 84 miniature spires, and considered a metaphor for the mythical Mount Meru, the home of the gods. The base of the spire is home to a profusion of spectacular statuary, the most popular of which are the depictions of Kama Sutra inspired erotic acts and seductive poses, believed to be a celebration of life.

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