Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Allen Zagarell

Second Advisor

Dr. Belinda S. Straight

Third Advisor

Nancy E. Falk

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This study explores the hero stones of the Nilgiri Mountains of South India. This project has focused on the site of Kavilorai for developing a stylistic base to compare other sites of the region with. After analysis it was determined that Kavilorai contained four separate, but connected stylistic expressions carved on the hero stones. The findings when compared with other upper elevation sites corresponded to a high quality/low quality theme, often incorporating the ritual suicide sati. When comparing the stylistic representation of the carved figures to the Badaga Lingayat temple of Seminatum there surfaced strong thematic and stylistic connections. The findings suggest the immigrant population of the Badaga played an integral part in carving the hero stones post-1565 AD.

Included in

Anthropology Commons