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The Buddhist Landscape of Varanasi: Sacred Landscapes of South and Southeast Asia

Vidula Jayaswal (Author)

Lord Buddha came to Sarnath, where he delivered his first Sermon, and paved a stable foundation for Buddhism. Scriptures obviously became the most holy place and a famous Buddhist Pilgrimage. As a result, a large Buddhist landscape came up with Mrigadaya (Sarnath) at the centre. The western side of it was occupied by the learned and wise occupied by the learned and wise immigrants, the residents of Rishipattana.

There are a number of unanswered questions related to the Buddhist landscape of Varanasi, e.g. why did the lord chose to deliver his First Sermon at sarnath, also, when Varanasi was the famous city, why was periphery selected by him? The nature and successive growth of the landscape created around the place of First Sermon also is obscure. The old and recent archaeological investigations carried out in the vicinity of Sarnath have brought to light evidence which provide answers to some of the above questions, and also outline the chronology and growth of this Buddhist landscape.

The present volume is aimed at reaching a larger section of the Society, which is interested in Buddhism and Buddhist sites. Although archaeological and other scientific data has been utilised technical jargon has been avoided. The work is also aimed to promote such specialised attempts in the historical studies, when interpretation of archaeological findings of a holy place is envisaged in its geo-cultural totality.

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About the author

Vidula Jayaswal

Grand daughter of (Late) Dr. K.P. Jayaswal, Dr. Vidula Jayaswal is presently teaching and guiding research in Ancient Indian History in general and Archaeology in particular at the Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi. Dr. Jayaswal was selected by the Government of India under the National Scholarship Scheme to study abroad and received specialized training in Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley, U.S.A. She also served the Archaeological Survey of India. Author of eight books, five in English – Palaeohistory of India, Chopper-Chopping Component of Palaeolithic India, Kushana Clay Art, An Ethno Archaeological View of Indian Terracottas and Paisra: The Stone Settlement of Bhiar (last two in co-authorship) and three text books in Hindi-Bharatiya Itihas ke Adi Charan Ki Roop Rekha (Pura Prastar Yuga), Bharatiya Itihas Ka Madhya Prastar Yuga , and Bharatiya Itihas Ka Nav Prastar Yuga. She has also edited a proceeding of workshop which is published as Ancient Ceramics. Dr. Jayaswal has to her credit more than fifty research papers, which have been published in the proceedings of International Symposia and various publications of repute. Her noteworthy field investigations are excavations of prehistoric sites at Lahariandih in Mirzapur and Paisra in Munger districts and excavation of historical settlement at Bhitari, and, surveys of pottery and terracotta producing centres of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Her recent discovery of the Ancient Quarries of Asokan times and subsequent periods, near Chunar is a significant contribution to both Archaeology and History of Arts.

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Bibliographic information

Title The Buddhist Landscape of Varanasi: Sacred Landscapes of South and Southeast Asia
Format Hardcover
Date published: 20.07.2015
Edition 1st. ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788173055416
length 230p., B/W Illustrations; 17cm x 22cm.