Row of viragals (monumental memorial stones) by the roadside at Murdesvara.
Photographer: Cousens, Henry
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of a row of inscribed viragals from Murdesvara, taken by Henry Cousens sometime in the1880s or 1890s. The photograph is from the Archaeological Survey of India Collections (Indian Museum Series). Viragals are monumental memorial stones and thirty five were found by Cousens at Murdesvara. Each stone was carved to record a death and the subject matter of the stone reflects the beliefs of the person who died. The stones found at Murdesvara were either Jain, in which case a seated Jaina was inscribed, or Hindu, in which case a linga is inscribed onto the stone. The departed individual is also often depicted in a sitting position. The stones are divided into bands and the remainder of these bands is filled with carvings of battle and dancing scenes supplemented by inscriptions in the divisions between each panel. The stones were found by Cousens in fields and by the side of roads.