Shiva, one of the Trinity Lords of Hindu mythology, on the gopuram of the same temple. Shiva is typically depicted as seen here, with a crescent moon [the origins of which I have not been able to dig up], long and matted hair and a trident in his hand. It is not evident in this image but Shiva is supposed to be covered with ashes despite being a Lord, owing to his ascetic ways and mastery over the materialistic attractions of the world. Similarly, the tiger skin represents conquest of lust and its use is reserved for the supreme ascetics. In Hindu mythology, endless serpents signify eternity and thus the coiled snake around his neck indicates that he is beyond time. Next to him is Nandi, the bull which serves as his mount.
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