Thursday, July 18, 2024

Arts and Architecture


Ashoka Pillars and Buddhist Sculptures 

Mahabhodi Temple The finest monolithic pillars of Ashoka is the lion crowned pillar at Lauriya, Namdangarh in Champaran, which consists of a polished block of sandstone 10.1 metres long with a capital nearly 2.13 metres in length. Two other inscribed pillars are found at Rampurwa and Laurya at Basark. All four were set up on the imperial road from Pataliputra to Nepal. The edicts of the emperor are inscribed on rock at the Dhauli Hill in Orissa and on a hill near Sasaram in Bihar. 

Buddhistic statuary of a later date is common in the Gaya district with the exception of Graeco-Buddhistic sculptures of Gandharva. These images are the only class of Indian Buddhist art that has come down through ages in a fair state of completeness. At Bodh Gaya, the oldest Buddhist memorial is a stone railing ornamented with friezes, panels and bosses, which display considerable artistic skill. The temple is 55 metres high. It is a modern restoration carried out by the Government. It has a large collection of Stupas which the pilgrims to this holy land left as memorials for their visit. The stupa was originally a copy in brick or stone of an earthen sepulchral tumulus and ending with the ornamented spire of the medieval period.