The Mandapas, or rock-cut cave shrines, of Mamallapuram date to the 7th and 8th centuries. The cave temples are incomplete, which has made them a significant source of information about how cave monuments were excavated and built in 7th-century India. Segments of the caves indicate that artisans worked with architects to mark off the colonnade, cutting deep grooves into the rock to create rough-hewn protuberances with margins. The hanging rocks were then cut off, and they repeated the process. After the excavation, other artisans moved in to polish the rocks and begin the creation of designs, motifs, friezes and Hindu iconography. The process of producing rock-cut cave temples influenced later structural Hindu temples.