was built in the 1630s by King Thirumalai Nayak. Madurai is in India's far south, and this architectural style is called Dravidian. Only about a quarter of the original palace remains, mainly two buildings facing a columned courtyard. One is the royal audience hall, the other a dance hall. (Meaning a place to watch professional dancers, not a ballroom.) The king is supposed to have consulted an Italian architect in the design, but so far as I can tell this is a bit of nineteenth-century folklore and it may have been dreamed up to explain the octagonal dome and the European details in the molding.