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Transcript of Buddhist architecture

Buddhist Architecture

Buddhist Architecture

Submitted By SWARA BENDRE and AYUSHI DONGRE (B. Arch Sem II)

SDPS Womens CollegeAcknowledgementWe would like to express our special thanks to our H.O.D Ar. Vishal Yardi sir as well as our teacher Mr. S. P. Verma sir who gave us the golden opportunity to work on paper presentation on the topic Buddhist Architecture which helped us to obtain knowledge about so many new things. Secondly we would also like to thank our faculty members Mr. Ketan Jain sir and Mr. Abhijit Kulkarni sir who helped us a lot in finishing this paper. We are making this paper not only for competition but also to increase our knowledge .


The places connected with the four principal events of Buddhas life such as his birth, enlightenment, first preaching and decease. Two major branches of Buddhism are recognized as Thervada and Mahayana. The Indian emperor Asoka established Buddhism in Magadha as state religion and opted architectural monuments as the way to propagate the religion. He is credited with the authorship of three principal types of monuments, viz., (1) pillars, (2) stupas, and (3) rock-cut caves, Asoka set up at least thirty pillars including ten inscribed with his edicts on sites scattered in Districts Champaran and Muzaffarpur of Bihar. Also he introduced 84,000 stupas along the stretch of his empire.


3The early mahayana phase

During the centuries immediately after the beginning of the Christian era, the Buddhist communities in the middle and southern parts of the peninsula were actively engaged in producing monuments, such as masonry stupas, wooden chaitya halls, and rock-cut monasteries, according to the system of the Buddhist faith. Also the main area of inspiration was from Afghanistan and some European countries.

Borobudur Stupa , IndonesiaPillars Made of Chunar sandstone and bearing a highly lustrous polish are tapering monolithic shafts, between 10 and 15 m. high, with an ornamental capital, surmounted by powerful animal-sculpture of symbolical significance. The best-preserved pillar is that at Lauriya-Nandangarh (District Champaran), which is complete with the Asokan edicts and a capital crowned by a stately figure of lion.

Pillar at Lauriya, NandangarhStupasA stupa is a mound-like or semi-hemispherical structure containing buddhist relics, typically the ashes of Buddhist monks, used by Buddhists as a place of meditation.Stupas originated as pre-Buddhist earthen burial mounds, in which ascetics were buried in a seated position, called chaitya . After the parinirvana of the Buddha, his remains were cremated and the ashes divided and buried under eight mounds with two further mounds encasing the urn and the embers. Ghalegay hosts one of the biggest stupas at Mohallah Singardar in district Swat, Pakistan.the Dhamek Stupa at Sarnath and the Great Stupa at Sanchi in Madhya Pradesh.

Dhamek Stupa, SarnathSanchi stupas

Sanchi in Raisen district of Madhya Pradesh is famous for its magnificent Buddhist monuments and edifices.Situated on a hill, these beautiful and well preserved stupas depict the various stages of development of Buddhist art and architecture over a period of thirteen hundred years.The Great Stupa is 120 feet across (36.6 meters) and, excluding the railing and umbrella, is 54 feet high (16.46 meters). The present stupa encases an earlier one of about half its present dimensions. Sanchi Stupa ,MP

Plan and Elevation of Sanchi Stupa

Chaitya halls

Chaitya grihas or halls of worship were built all over the country either of brick or excavated from rocks.Ruins of a large number of structural Buddhist chaitya grihas are found in the eastern districts of Andhra Pradesh, in valleys, near rivers and lakes.The largest brick chaitya hall was excavated at Guntapalli.The chunar sand-stone rock-cut chaityas are at Bhaja. Kondane.

Chaityagriha Karla, Maharashtra

ViharasViharas are constructed with brick or excavated from rocks are found in different parts of India.An arrangement of apartments for the accommodation of the monks, and known as a vihara. A typical vihara consisted of a square central hall entered by a doorway, Out of the central hall it has cells and on the top it has shrine.The original plan was for one of these viharas to be situated close to the chaitya

Plan of Viharas Rock-cut Vihara , Nasik

Rock-cut caves

These caves are true treasure and history of great India followed by the era of Ashoka the Great of Mauryan, Chalukyas and Pallava. Most of the natural caves in India are Hindu cave temples such as Vaishno Devi, Amarnath and Varaha cave temple and these Hindu cave temples are one of the most visited pilgrimage site in India.

Ajanta CavesExamples of Rock-cut cavesAjanta Caves: The Ajanta caves are the worlds greatest historical monument situated in Jalgaon city of Maharashtra. The 29 rock-cut cave monuments include paintings and sculptures of religious art. The Ajanta and Ellora caves in India are the masterpieces of Indias hillside rock cut architecture. The other famous caves in Maharashtra are Karla and Bhaja caves, Kanheri caves, Ellora caves and Elephanta caves.

Elephanta Caves, Maharashtra

Plan Of Elephanta Caves Main Cave Shrine

Interior of caveTemples and monastries

Another important monument type in buddhist architecture are the temples and monastries of Buddha spread across South-eastern area of Asia. Some of the famous temples are as follows.

Borobudur Bagan

Shwedagon Pagoda Mahabodhi Temple

Boudhanath Todaiji Temple Jokhang Pha Thut Luang

Wat Arun Haeinsa TempleConclusionThe Buddhist communities in Mahayana phase decided to freeze their principle for years in the form of monuments.The preachings of Buddha have a effect on architecture of Pillars, Stupas, Rock cut caves, Chaityagrihas, Viharas, Temples and Monastries.Also inspired by architecture of diff countries.Showcase a variety of shapes and stuctures like Dome, Pagodas, Stone-made structures, Brick-made and Wooden structures spreading Buddhism across many nations.BibliographyThe Great ages of world architecture by G.N. HiraskarPercy Brown, Indian Architecture (Buddhist and Hindu period), Taraporevala and sons, Bombay, 1983 Satish Grover, The Architecture of India (Buddhist and Hindu period),Vikas Publishing House, New Delhi, 1981 http://www.wikipedia.org/ http://indiapicks.com/ http://www.google.co.in/

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