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Satero-ratna Temple

Satero-ratna Temple is located at Jagannathbari of Krisnapur village, two kilometre south-east of Comilla town. The construction work of this octagonal temple was initiated by king Ratnamanikya (II) of Tripura (1685-1712), but it remained unfinished. It was completed later in 1761 AD by king Krisnakishore Manikya. The idea and planning of the temple is believed to have been derived from the tomb of Sher Shah Suri, situated at Sasaram of Bihar. The architectural design of the octagonal temple was ornamented with seventeen jewels (Ratna or tower). But now most of the ratnas have disappeared as the temple itself suffered damage in course of time. The first and the second floor were ornamented with eight ratnas each, while the seventeenth ratna was placed in the centre. There is a seventeen-ratna temple in west Bengal of India, but the architectural design of that one is different. The towers of this temple are octagonal and umbrella-shaped. The width of vertical structure raised from the altar to the central tower was made narrow in several steps. A kalasa (pitcher) finial was placed on top of the central tower. But architectural design of the towers of the Indian temple is different. The towers are notched, designed with wheels of chariot. The architect of this conical tower was influenced by the architectural design of European Church. The width of the shrine is about 52.50 metre and from the exterior it seems to be a three-storied, but actually it is a five-storied structure. The height of the ground floor is 4.05 metre and there are four archways of about 2.10-metre height to enter the shrine. There are six dome-shaped windows in the first floor. Moreover, all the steps of the temple have been decorated with similar design of dome. The temple was also decorated with the motif of flowers, foliages, bells and geometrical design. [Mokammal H Bhuiyan]