Ajanta and Ellora Caves

 

The Ajanta and Ellora Caves are located near  Aurangabad in Maharashtra. This cave is considered to be an excellent example of ancient rock-cut caves. Equipped with sculptures, paintings, and murals, the Ajanta and Ellora caves are a combination of Buddhist, Jain, and Hindu monuments as the complex include Buddhist monasteries as well as Hindu and Jain temples. This cave is considered to be the most ancient. The cave has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

Ajanta Caves

Ajanta Caves

There are about 30 rock-cut Buddhist cave monuments in the cave of Ajanta. The cave contains many paintings and rock-cut sculptures. The Ajanta Caves are considered to be one of the most prestigious monuments in India as they have many beautiful paintings and sculptures depicting India’s rich cultural heritage. The construction of this cave is mainly done in 2 phases. The first century begins around BCE and the second begins around 400-650 CE, according to old accounts or in a short period of 460–480 CE according to later scholarships. The Ajanta Cave has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983.

 

Ajanta Caves

History of Ajanta Caves

The first-period depicts the Hinayana-style Chaitya Puja Hall. In which no idol is included all stupas come. The caves in the initial group are 9, 10, 12, 13, and 15A. The frescoes in these caves tell the stories of the Jatakas. According to Walter Spink of the first cave, they were built during the period from 100 BCE to 100 CE, believed to be under the leadership of the Hindu Satavahana dynasty who ruled the region. Of these, caves 9 and 10 have stupas with worship halls of chaitya-house forms, and caves 12, 13, and 15 are vihars.

 

The second phase of construction of Ajanta Cave was completed in the 5th century. In the second phase 1-8, 11, 14-29 so many caves were made the second phase of the cave has been built keeping in mind the spiritual Mahayagya and Greater Vehicle tradition of Buddhism. The description of the caves by the 7th-century Chinese traveler Xuanzang and the scattered medieval graffiti suggests that the Ajanta caves were later known and probably used. According to the Archaeological Survey, “the second phase of the paintings began around the 5th to 6th centuries AD and continued for the next two century

 

Ellora Caves

Ellora Caves

There are 34 monasteries and temples in this cave. The cave is considered to be one of the largest rock-ashram-temple cave complexes in the world, featuring Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain monuments and artwork, dating to the period 600-1000 CE. Ellora has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cave 16 is home to the world’s largest single-stone excavation, the Kailasa Temple, a chariot shaped monument dedicated to Lord Shiva. There are more than 100 caves in this place. The caves contain caves of Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

 

History of Ellora Caves

The Ellora monuments were built during the Rashtrakuta dynasty, which formed part of the Hindu and Buddhist caves, and the Yadava dynasty, which built numerous Jain caves. The first cave belongs to Hindu Rameshwar in the 6th century CE. Most of these are produced during the reign of the Kalachuri dynasty in the sixth and seventh centuries. The inscriptions on the walls of the Ellora Caves date back to the 6th century and are one of the most famous. Rashtrakuta Dantidurga inscribed between 753 and 757 AD on the porch of Cave 15.

 

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