The Temple of the Sun was one of several temples controlled by the Holy Therns at the height of their power. Among other features, it possesses a slow-revolving shaft that rotates its position once a day (presumably intended to serve as some sort of calendar).  At the end of The Gods of Mars, the Princesses Dejah Thoris, Thuvia, and Phaidor all became trapped inside this shaft, and John Carter was forced to wait a year in order to liberate them.

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