Sculpture pieces excavated from the Stupa at Bharhut: fragments of coping of gateway
Photographer: Beglar, Joseph David
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of some sculpture pieces excavated from the stupa at Bharhut taken by Joseph David Beglar in 1874. This photograph shows lengths of coping which would have adorned a gateway at Bharhut. The date that a stupa was first erected at this site is not known, however, by the time the gateways were added in the early part of the first century BC, Bharhut had been established as a Buddhist place of worship for centuries. At this stage, the stupa complex consisted of a hemispherical dome, encircled by an inner and an outer railing or vedika which was added in the latter part of the second century BC. The railing had openings in each of the four cardinal directions and about half a century after its addition, the openings were adorned with the addition of gateways. Each of these consisted of two pillars and three elaborately carved beams. The coping shown here has representations of a lion; a kneeling elephant with a lotus stem coming out of his mouth; a man seated next to a hut’s door talking to another person standing on the other side of the door.