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Nyatapola; the Pride of Nepal
Temple's structure survived earthquake, amazes scientists
Radheshyam Dahal (rsdahal)     Print Article 
Published 2006-02-02 15:22 (KST)   
Nepal may be overlooked as a leader of technology in the 21st century. But its history shows the nation was ahead of its time when it came to architecture.

Nyatapola :a pride of Nepal
©2006 Radheshyam
Nyatapola, a five-story pagoda temple built in 1702, still stands today even after surviving a 8.3 earthquake in 1933.

"Nepal's technical skills and scientific knowledge of that time (the time when Nyatapola was built) was much more advanced. Nyatapola is the real example of it," said Dr. Dinesh Raj Bhuju of the Royal Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (RONAST).

The Nyatapola temple is the largest temple of Bhaktapur. It rests on a base on five levels with four sanctuaries of Ganesh in the four corners. Standing at 30 meters high, it dominates the city.

It was built in the period of King Bhupatendra Malla when Bhaktapur was a sovereign state. It was built with wood and bricks and has artistic designs.

Nyatapola in newari language (a local language of Bhaktapur) means "five-story temple."

The locals believed that this temple was built to quiet Bhairab, an angry god. Bhairab's temple is in front of Nyatapola. Bhairab's mandir was built before Nyatapola.

The legend says Bhairab vandalized the society of that time. So the people discussed with King Bhupatendra Malla and finally decided to build a more powerful temple than Bhairab's.

Front view of Nyatapola
©2006 Radheshyam
To make Nyatapola strong and powerful they made a statue in front of temple of elephants, tigers, a powerful snake god and Bhaktapur's strongest man Jaya mal Pata.

Also, Siddha Laxmi, a powerful and benevolent god, was worshiped inside Nyatapola.

After calming Bhairab, peace prevailed in the city and people lived easily and happily.

Thousands of tourists come every year to appreciate the technology used to make this temple.

In the 18th century, many temples, statues and stupas were built in Nepal, mostly in Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur, which were three different states at that time. Now these three places are known as the Kathmandu valley, or the valley of temples.

Artistic work in the temple.
©2006 Radheshyam

The square from Nyatapola
©2006 Radheshyam

Tourists at Nyatapola
©2006 Radheshyam
©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Radheshyam Dahal

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