View of Giryek Hill, near Rajgir 1003214b
Photographer: Caddy, Alexander E.
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of Giryek Hill, Rajgir taken by Alexander E.Caddy in 1895. The area around Rajgir is composed of rugged hills, like that pictured. Small rock shelters and caves are commonly found and Buddha utilised these for residential purposes for short periods of time. Rajgir played an important role in the Buddha's life as the political climate here was favourable towards non-Brahmanical sects like Buddhism. At that time known as Rajagriha, the city was the ancient capital of the kingdom of Magadha. The rulers of the Magadha dynasty at the time of the Buddha were Bimbisara and Ajatashatru (circa 543-459 BC), and it has been claimed the latter was a Buddhist convert. After the Buddha's death Ajatashatru provided accommodation for the first Buddhist council in front of the Saptaparni cave close to Rajgir.