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Sarnath: Buddha, 5th Century A.D. Allahabad, Municipal Museum

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CollectionsArthur Llewellyn Basham
Title: Sarnath: Buddha, 5th Century A.D. Allahabad, Municipal Museum
Author(s): Photographer: Arthur Llewellyn Basham
Keywords: Gupta Period;Sarnath Architect;stone sculpture;mounted transparency set
Series/Report no.: Basham Collection
Description: This is perhaps the most often imitated of the Buddha images and is also probably the most famous to western eyes as it symbolizes the very essence of Buddhism in a single sculpture, The Buddha type is the yoga-ascetic holding the hands in the dharmachakra mudra or Turning of the Wheel of the Law sign and calmly meditating over the cycle of life, Barely visible on the platform beneath the Buddha are six figures in relief depicting some of Buddha's followers, Occasionally, these six, or sometimes five, are shown flanking an aniconic symbol of Buddha on the platform relief, this occurs when the seated Buddha above is to be understood as being in the Deer Park giving his first sermon where it is said, 'he set the Wheels of the Law in motion,' A stone of much finer grain has been used in this sculpture since Sarnath had a good deposit of chunar sandstone for its workshops as opposed to the red sandstone of coarser grain used at Mathura, On this account, a very polished carving could be executed in this medium, and outlines could be made softer while geometric underdrawing could be easily hidden,
Other Identifiers: ANUA 682-915


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