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General view from the left of porch and entrance to Buddhist Vihara, Cave I, Ajanta

General view from the left of porch and entrance to Buddhist Vihara, Cave I, Ajanta

Photographer: Gill, Robert

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1869

Shelfmark: Photo 1000/4(462)

Item number: 10004462

Length: 17.8

Width: 21.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of the verandah of Cave I at Ajanta, taken by Robert Gill around 1868-70. The Buddhist cave temples of Ajanta were excavated into a horse-shoe shaped cliff overlooking the Waghora River during two time periods; firstly, the

2nd–1st Century BC and secondly, during the 5th Century AD. The caves are numbered 1-28 according to their location, not chronologically. They consist of monasteries (viharas) and prayer-halls (chaitya) used by a community of Buddhist monks who resided there. Cave I is a very fine monastery from the late 5th Century. The verandah has cells and porches at the ends and three doorways leading into the hall. Above the verandah are figurative friezes and the doorways are decorated with amorous couples, maidens and naga deities. The ceiling is covered with small panels with various motifs. The interior has a richly sculptural decoration and has preserved some of the finest paintings at Ajanta, representing scenes from the life of Buddha as narrated in the Jatakas.

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