Vidyaranya (IAST: Vidyāraṇya) is variously known as a kingmaker, patron saint and high priest to Harihara I and Bukka Raya I, the founders of the Vijayanagara Empire.
He was the 12th Jagadguru of the Śringeri Śarada Pītham from 1380-1386.Vidyaranya helped the brothers establish the empire sometime in 1336. He later served as a mentor and guide to three generations of kings who ruled over the Vijayanagara Empire.
Vijayanagara (Hampi), the capital of the empire, had a temple dedicated to Mādhavācārya. He was also a reputed Sanskrit-language author.
Some people identify him as Madhavacharya, the author of the Sarvadarśanasaṅgraha, a compendium of different philosophical schools of Hindu philosophy and Pañcadaśī, an important text for Advaita Vedanta.