Close view of entrance to Buddhist vihara, Cave IV, Ajanta
Photographer: Gill, Robert
Medium: Photographic print
Stereoscopic photograph of the entrance to the Buddhist vihara, Cave IV at Ajanta, taken by Robert Gill in 1868. The Buddhist cave temples of Ajanta were excavated into a horse-shoe shaped cliff overlooking the Waghora River in the 2nd – 1st century BC and later in the 5th century AD, a period of time which coincides with the Hinayana and Mahayana phases of Buddhist art. Cave 4 is the largest monastery at Ajanta but was left unfinished when it was excavated in the late 5th century. It is a two-storeyed cave with a verandah with plain octagonal pillars and a cell at either end. This view shows the central doorway leading into the sanctuary. The jambs are decorated with carvings representing figures of guardian, couples, maidens and flying figures. On the lintel there are figures of the Buddha and ganas. The panel to the right depicts Avalokiteshvara, the compassionate Bodhisattva.