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1. Ajanta. General view of cave temple facades.

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CollectionsArthur Llewellyn Basham
Title: 1. Ajanta. General view of cave temple facades.
Author(s): Photographer: Basham, Arthur Llewellyn
Keywords: Ajanta (Gupta)
mounted transparency set
Series/Report no.: Basham Collection
Description: Ajanta is located in the northern part of the Deccan, a little east of Sanchi on a bend of a stream penetrating a rather isolated section of that country. The caves, numbering 29 in all, were hewn from the living rock and contain many monk's cells and some of the most impressive chaitya halls in India. Their construction was accomplished after a vast expenditure of funds from the Buddhist church over a great many years: beginning in the 1st century B.C. and terminating in approximately the 9th century A.D. Most famous at the Ajanta caves are the magnificent paintings dating to the Classic Gupta Period and, later, to the Early Medieval Period. These are outstanding works of art and considerably more accomplished than the abundant sculpture of the facades and interiors. Because the caves were built over many centuries, Ajanta is a type-site for the different artistic styles and trends characteristic of the historical periods during which the caves were continuously built and embellished. This is particularly true of later Guptan art, for a good deal of artistic activity took place at Ajanta under the Guptan dynasties. The site is also highly valuable for comparative purposes in that the sculptures show both pre- and post-Buddha imagery in its most manifest forms
that is, before and after the image of the Buddha was acceptable for physical representation.
Other Identifiers: ANUA 682-736


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