Close view of pillars inside the ''Amrita'' Cave (Cave XIX), Udayagiri, Madhya Pradesh
Photographer: Beglar, Joseph David
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of pillars inside the ''Amrita'' Cave, taken by Joseph David Beglar in the 1870s. At Udaygiri in the modern state of Madhya Pradesh, there are about twenty rock cut caves dating to the Gupta period. Most are just niches however some form columned temples. This view shows a pillar in Cave 19 (mid-5th Century). Inside Cave 19 stand a number of lingas and a Nandi image indicating that the cave is Shaivite. There are four columns in the sanctuary which have square shafts. These pillars have been described by A. Cunningham in his 'Report of tours in Bundelkhand and Malwa in 1874-75 and 1876-77' : ''The roof is supported by four massive pillars, 8 feet high and 1 foot 7 inches square, also hewn out of the rock. They have richly-ornamented capitals, but instead of the usual turn-overs at the four corners, they have four horned and winged animals standing upright on their hind legs, and touching their mouths with their forefeet...''