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The Virupaksha Temple was built in the seventh century in dedication to Virupaksha, an avatar of the major Hindu deity Shiva. The southwestern Indian town of Hampi where it’s located was the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire that ruled the region at that time, and the temple continues to be a site of pilgrimage and festivals. Intricately and delicately carved pillars decorate the temple, which has a sanctum and three antechambers as well as pillared halls and beautiful gateways and courtyards.