Keladi Museum and Historical Research Bureau Museum of Archeology and Culture Folklore Museum

About the Museum:

        The Museum of Archaeology and Culture was initiated in 1990's with a few personal collections of the staff members of this Department. Now it has been developed into an independent museum housing rare and unique antiquities throwing light on the regional history and culture. The collection is enriched due to the efforts of the Department staff and students and support of the eminent archaeologists of this region namely A. Sundara, S.R.Rao and K. Paddayya.



  The Museum is established with the following objectives.
  1.To impact practical knowledge about the prehistoric and historical archaeology to post graduate students in the Department and to give real working experience to the students of Diploma course in Archaeology and Museology and research students.
  2.Preservation and exhibition of the antiquities discovered and collected by the faculty and researchers in the Department as a part of their research programme, field explorations and excavations.
  3.To created interest and motivate the students in archaeological exploration and research.
  4.Develop a resource center for the Research and to help the researchers of India and abroad who are interested in studying history and archaeology of this region.
  5.To educate the public about the regional history and culture.
  6.To establish a systems infrastructure in support of providing highly available and secure applications, web site, and data repositories.
  7.To increase the efficiency and effectiveness of administrative tasks and information retrieval at the university through implementation of technology and improved administrative processes.
  8.To work in partnership with academic computing and departmental support across campus to create a campus-wide support infrastructure for ICT that will deliver competitive support and services to faculty, staff, and students.


Museum exhibits are arranged according to the sequence of Indian archaeological cultures i.e. Pre-history, Proto-history, Early History and Modern period. Collection is enriched with inclusion of several palm leaf and paper manuscripts and it is planned to develop each one of these into separate galleries.
Prehistoric antiquities : Show case No. 1 to 4 of Museum display lower and middle Paleaolithic stone tools discovered in the Bhadra River Project (B.R.P.) area, which include some of the finest specimen of prehistoric tools found in Karnataka. These tools represent the Hunting and food gathering stage of human culture in this region. Along with these tools a few specimen tools are displayed from Hunsgi and Raylusima region of Andhra to give an idea about the regional variations. A hand axe from Isamapur is dated back to 1.1 million years according to ESR dating method. Paleaoliths are followed by large assemblage of Microlithic tools. Smiley face
Neolithic period represents earliest agricultural communities of South India, who had a settled life and who initiated pottery technique. Neoliths date from 2500 to 1000 B.C. The Neolithic people raised rag, rice and several local species of food grains. The Museum abodes a rare collection of Neolithic tools comprising of polished axes, ring stones, sling balls along with the pottery, from different parts of Shimoga region, namely B.R.Project, Gonibidu, Hasudi, Hosalli, Holebaglu, Huttadimba, Kulagatte, Pillangeri and Gondi. Smiley face

Protohistoric antiquities : Showcase No. 5 and 6 in the Museum present pottery specimen of the Indian Chalcolithic Cultures representing the earliest farming cultures of the upper Deccan and Central India including some parts of Rajasthan. Pottery from different cultures like Ahar (Rajasthan), Kayatha and Malwa (Madhya Pradesh), Jorwe and Savalda cultures (Maharashtra) along with microliths from Inamgaon (Maharastra) are displayed. Chalcolithic cultures of India are dated from 2500 to 800 B.C. The people of these cultures used copper tools along with microliths, for which it is called as chalcolithic culture. This period is recognized with the help of respective pottery types. Settlements of all these communities are excavated and cultural remains in the form of houses, pottery, copper tools and ornaments have been recovered.
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The Museum stores replicas of seals and sealings of Indus Culture. Most are clay models representing those from the Indus site at Lothal (Gujarath).

Pottery specimens of Megalithic period from Shimoga and Chitradurga regions are exhibited in this Museum. Megalith is a burial mainly associated with huge stones or stone slabs. The burials date from 1200 B.C. to the beginning of the Christian Era. The communities practiced these burial types introduced iron technology in South India. The Museum houses a rare piece of gold flower from Puttur Megalith, South Kanara, dating back to 1st millennium B.C.

Historical Roof Tiles of Karnataka : Show case No. 7 has a rare collection of the historical roof tiles of Karnataka. Roof tiles changed their shapes form time to time. This exhibition gives an idea about the evolution of roof tiles from the Satavahana period to the 19th century, till the arrival of the modern Mangalore tiles.

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Early Historic antiquities : Showcase No. 8 houses the pottery specimens of Painted Grey Ware, which are dated from 1000 to 700 B.C. i.e. later vedic period, to be found in the Ganga-Yamuna Doab. A sherd of Northern Black Polished Ware, of the Mauryan period and the well known Russed Coated White Painted Ware, of the Satavahana period from Chandravalli and Brahmagiri are also exhibited in this showcase. Museum houses a few Buddhist votive stupas from Rajaghatta, Karnataka, and a sealing inscription with Brahmi characters of 4th century A.D., found within such votive stupas.

A set of three Copperplates contains and inscription issued by Hoysala Vira Ballala III, dated 1316 A.D. This inscription records an Agrahara grant by one Soma Dandanayaka. He converted two villages called Odeyuru and Maleyanahalli as an agrahara called Bhairvapura in the name of his mother Bhairava Dannayakitti. The first half of the text is in Sanskrit which eulogizes the Hoysala kings and the second part, which narrates the details of gift, is in Kannada language. The script used is Devanagari.

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Collection of coins : Showcase No. 9 and 10 displays original coin specimens of the Anandas, locol rulers of the Satavahana period, Youdehya gana, Kushanas, Kadambas to the Napolean III. Electroplated Replicas of coins were procured for the purpose of teaching numismatics to the post graduate students. They contain all the important coin types of India right from the punch marked coins of 3rd century B.C. to the Mughal period. Coins of special attraction are the zodiacal coins of Jahangir and a two hundred mohur commemorative coin of Shahajahan.

Late Medieval antiquities : Showcase No. 11 exhibits Wooden covers of a manuscript dated to the early 19th century containing paintings of the Keladi style. On the front cover is the painting depicting Umamahesvara flanked by the diving musicians Tumburu and Narada and the rear cover depicts Virabhadra flanked by Daksha and his consort.

A jewelry mould of the Vijayanagara period, depicting women stick players (koalata) in typical Vijayanagara style is one of the main attraction of this museum.

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Late Medieval terracotta deities found in the sacred grooves of Ainakai and Savalukantha, in the Sahyadri ghat region of North Kanara district, are exhibited in the same show case. They consist of tiger deities and mother goddess figures. The grooves that house tiger deities are called Huylidevara Bana and those of mother goddesses are called Devi Bana. The tiger deities protected the cattle wealth while the mother goddesses were connected with fertility cult.

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Stone sculptures : The Museum also exhibits a few sculptures dating to 5th to 16th century A.D. They are :

1.A Kubja Yaksha from Somapur, Tarikere.
2.A Tirthankara statue form Humcha, Shimoga District.
3.Virabhadra, Naga and Bhairava statues from Hanumanthapura.
4.Mahisha Mardini from Konandur, Tirthahalli.
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Contact :

Museum of Archaeology and Culture
Department of PG Studies and Research in History and Archaeology.
Kuvempu University
Jnana Sahyadri
Shankaraghatta - 577 451