boulders and worked their way downwards forming one of the most captivating ancient temples on Earth.
But although experts argue they used a vertical excavation method, it still remains a mystery how they did it.
What did the builders of the Ellora caves use to excavate the temples, and where is all the remaining material, what kind of tools were used? And what types of technologies were known to them?
Archaeologists maintain that the builders of the intricate temples had at their disposal hammers, chisels, and picks, and no more than that.
The Padmanabhaswamy Temple and its Secret Door
Another fascinating ancient temple, and another one dating back to ancient Indian cultures.
Located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India, the Padmanabhaswamy Temple is one of the most impressive, and richest temples of ancient India.
The facade of the Padmanabhaswamy temple was built in a Dravidian style and its principal deity Vishnu is enshrined in it.
Its existence is mentioned in a number of ancient Hindu texts, including the Mahabharata. Considered one of the 108 primary Holy Abodes in Vaishnavism, this temples is glorified in the Divya Prabandha, a collection of 4,000 Tamil verses composed by the 12 Alvars, and was compiled in its present form by Nathamuni during the 9th – 10th centuries.
Its name can be traced back to 500 BCE and 300 CE, where it is mentioned in the Sangam Period of Literature. While the temple is wealthy today, it is believed to have been extremely rich thousands of years ago, the reason why one of its names was “The Golden Temple.”
It is estimated that the temple possesses around 22 Billion worth of gold, jewels, and statues dating back hundreds of years. In fact, it was reported in 2011 that the treasure trove of the temples was the largest of its kind in India.
According to reports, there are eight known vaults within the temples, located on the western side designated Vaults; A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and H.
The Padmanabhaswamy temple is also home to a mysterious door (vault?) that features no bolts, not latches, and has no visible means of entry.
It is believed to have been sealed shut in ancient times via sound waves from a secret chant that has been lost in time. Two massive protective cobras adorn the door.
The Konark Sun Temple
Another wonder of ancient design and architecture, the Konark Sun Temple is truly a wonder of ancient times. This ancient temple was designed as a chariot consisting of 24 such wheels. Each wheel has a diameter of 9 feet, 9 inches, with 8 spokes.
Located in on the coastline of Odisha in India, this ancient temple is attributed to Narasingha Deva I of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty about 1250 CE.
The temple’s name derives from Sasrkin meaning corner or angle and sun: Kona means angle or corner and Arka means Sun.
Erected in honor fo the Dungi Sund god Surya, the structure was designed and eventually built in the shape of a thirty-meter high chariot, featuring massive horses and wheels, all carved from stone.
The ancient builders of the temples used a number of different stones, among which Chlorite, Laterite, and Khondolite stand out. It is noteworthy to mention that none of these stones came from quarries located nearby.
Somehow, the massive blocks of stone were transported from their original quarries to the construction site. Once finished, the temple is thought to have stood over sixty-one meters in height.
Like many other ancient structures, this temple too is now in ruins; mostly its shikara tower which stood over the sanctuary. The exact reason why the temple was partially destroyed remains an enigma to experts. Some experts argue that the temple is not damaged but that it was never finished.
Among the many intricate carvings, some of the most famous is the erotic kama and mithuna scenes.
However, one of the most incredible design elements of the temple, which by itself is already mind-bending, is a massive stone wheel engraved into the walls of the temple. The temple is still a major pilgrimage site for Hindus.