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Rock sculpture of Vishnu as Varaha rescuing Bhudevi, Cave Temple 5, Udayagiri, Madhya Pradesh

Rock sculpture of Vishnu as Varaha rescuing Bhudevi, Cave Temple 5, Udayagiri, Madhya Pradesh

Photographer: Beglar, Joseph David

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1875

Shelfmark: Photo 1003/(1370)

Item number: 10031370

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of a rock sculpture of Vishnu as Varaha rescuing Bhudevi, 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. The sculpture is located in rock-cut cave 5 at Udayagiri which dates to the early 5th Century. This large-scale sculpture depicts the myth of Vishnu as Varaha, the Boar, rescuing the goddess Bhudevi, the earth, from the waters. At the back there are rows of figures sages and divinities and two male musicians. On the sides of the panels there are images of the river goddesses Ganga and Yamuna with figures of attendants. Some interpretations claim that the scene represents the unification of northern India by the Guptas.

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