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Photographed by D. Tresham, Esq.

ANCIENT BUDDHIST TEMPLE.—BAKARÍYÁ KUND, BENARES.

is the temple to which reference has been already made. The Mohammedans have appropriated this edifice, and capped it with a dome, and now use it as a mausoleum. It stands on forty-two pillars, all which are in good order, with the exception of one in the southern portico, which has been twisted by the falling of a large tree upon it. Formerly there were, evidently, two pillars more than there are at present, upholding the heavy entablature of the southern portico, so that the whole number of pillars was, originally, forty-four. Of these, thirtytwo supported the temple proper, and four the roof of each of the northern, southern, and eastern porticos. To the west there is no portico, but simply a sort of projecting buttress or Sinhásan, on which, probably, the chief idol stood, and was, therefore, at once seen by persons coming in through the main entrance to the east. The northern and southern porticos are fifteen feet long by ten feet wide, while the eastern is only twelve feet by ten. The inner part of the temple is eighteen feet square.

Round the whole of the exterior of the temple, above the capitals of the columns, and supported by their external limb, runs an eavesstone, nearly three feet in width ; and, as at the Atállah and Jama Musjids at Jaunpore, this eaves-stone has been made to imitate wood, thus confirming Mr. Fergusson's remarks, where writing about this class of structures.

Each column is eight feet and a quarter in height, of which the quadrilateral shaft between the capital and the plinth is four feet and a half. The capital is in the form of a cross, each limb consisting of two portions; the lower being bell-shaped, with an ornament in the

corners.

The columns in the temple proper stand two or four together; and the abacus or square stone upon them, between the capital and architrave, is thirteen inches deep, and is beautifully carved. The architrave has a rich double band sculptured upon it, which passes all round the temple, including the porticos. Above this is a flat stone, and, above the stone, a row of niches, which are, probably, of Mohammedan origin.

Viewing the temple from the outside, a practised eye soon distinguishes between the ancient portion and that added by the Mohammedans. Above the portico, all below the octagonal breastwork is, evidently, of Buddhist workmanship, and the remainder, of Mohammedan; but the Mohammedans, there is reason to suppose, availed themselves of old materials. At the termination of the breastwork at each corner rests a small kalas, about two-thirds of the circular disk of which is exposed, the remainder being inserted in the wall. Although so many ages have elapsed since this temple was erected, and although it has been exposed alternately to the ruthlessness of Hindu and of Mohammedan fanaticism, yet with such singular skill have its proportions been designed, and its blocks of stone been joined together, —though without cement of any kind,—that, at the present moment, in spite of its aspect of hoary antiquity, it seems almost, if not quite, as durable as on the day on which it was finished; and it is unquestionable that, if it be not barbarously damaged by vandalish hands, it will continue to stand for centuries to come. The simplicity, combined with the great strength, of its parts, and the symmetrical arrangement of the whole, give to

the building, notwithstanding the general scantiness of its ornamentation, an appearance which the most fastidious must pronounce to be of no mean order of beauty. A small cloister was, originally, connected with the southwest corner of the temple, as is shown by the continuation of the ancient basement moulding, - a moulding which surrounds, indeed, all Buddhist buildings, in this quarter of India. Here was, probably, the vestry or retiring room of the officiating priests. Some of its walls are still visible.

It is greatly to be regretted that a large portion of the site of these ruins is in a disgustingly filthy state; so that none but the most ardent investigator would care to visit a place so foul and abominable.

In pronouncing upon the originality of any of the buildings which have been described in this chapter, great caution should be shown, especially as they are, all, in the hands of Mohammedans, who have utilized them for various purposes; and these are a race of people, in India, who have ever exhibited a wonderful aptitude for breaking down old Hindu edifices, and employing their materials in the erection of their own religious structures. At the same time, while, doubtless, very extensive transformations have been made in the course of ages, it is not too much to suppose that, in some few instances, portions of old buildings have escaped the general destruction, and still stand as at first erected. At any rate, as there is a vast amount of sculptured stones visible in all directions on this extensive site, whatever opinions may be formed respecting the existing buildings in which they are more or less found, there

can be none regarding the antiquity of much of the material of which they are composed. We may fairly suppose that one or more of the monasteries referred to by Hiouen Thsang, together with the temples attached to them,—as in the case of the monasteries at Sárnáth,—were situated here on the banks of the Kund. Many of the blocks of stone have one or more letters or symbols inscribed upon them, of which I made a collection of seventy. They are, chiefly, of the Gupta period, which is, therefore, in all likelihood, the date of most of the buildings to which they primarily belonged. When looking upon these remains, we cannot fail to recall the time when the ancient edifices, formerly here, were frequented by crowds of priests, monks, and disciples of the Buddhist faith. Then, probably, the tank was flanked, on three sides, by a lofty terrace of stone, while a spacious ghát, or flight of stairs, was on its southern side. Around the edges of this terrace, both southwards and westwards, ran cloisters; and to the east there must have been massive temples, capable of supporting such caps or kalases,—one of them nine feet in diameter,-as have been referred to in this description. It is a matter of much interest to the archæologist, to save from total oblivion these scattered traces of the past, when the Buddhists, who were long since expelled the country, were still famous, if not powerful, and, perhaps, were already engaged in that persistent struggle with the Brahmans which eventually terminated in their own utter extinction in India.

In illustration of these investigations, there were originally submitted to the Bengal Asiatic Society two

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