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Jain temple near Negapatam

Jain temple near Negapatam

Artist: Anonymous

Medium: Watercolour

Date: 1784

Shelfmark: WD628

Item number: 628

Length: 17.8

Width: 24.4

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Topographical Drawing

Water-colour drawing of the temple at Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu. Inscribed on the front in ink is: 'Sketch of an Ancient Structure near Negapatam commonly called the Chinese Pagoda but supposed to be the remains of a Jaina Temple.'

Nagapattinam was the headquarter of the Chola mandalam kingdom during Chola period in the 10th-11th centuries and was also the most important Buddhist centre of the Coromandel coast. The writings of foreign visitors indicate that this place was an important port with numerous temples. The Chinese Traveller Huang Tsuang mentioned the existence of a Buddha Vihar built by the great Ashoka. The Pallava King Rajasimha (690 - 720 BC) also permitted a Chinese king to build a Buddha Vihar in Nagappattinam. The temple, which was still standing in the middle of the 19th century, consisted of a multi-storey brick tower with tiers of angled roofs.

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