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DEVNIMORI: A LOST BUDDHIST HERITAGE SITE IN GUJARAT



  Apr 17, 2024

DEVNIMORI: A LOST BUDDHIST HERITAGE SITE IN GUJARAT



1. What significant archaeological findings were discovered at Devnimori?

At Devnimori, a significant archaeological site near Shamlaji in Gujarat, excavations revealed a Mahastupa containing a relic casket with sacred remains believed to be those of Gautama Buddha. The site also yielded Buddhist and Hindu structures, coins, and various types of pottery dating back to the 2nd-4th century CE.

2. How did the construction of the Meshvo dam impact Devnimori?

The construction of the Meshvo dam in the late 1960s led to the submersion of Devnimori and six other villages, resulting in the relocation of local residents and the loss of this historically significant site.

3. What distinguishes the art and architecture found at Devnimori?

The art and architecture at Devnimori show a blend of local and external influences, particularly from the Gandhara school of art. This includes the depiction of Buddha images in Dhyana mudra and Padmasana poses, as well as architectural styles and decorative motifs that reflect a confluence of regional styles with those of Mathura and Gandhara.

4. What does the inscription on the relic casket at Devnimori indicate?

The inscription on the relic casket, written in Sanskrit and Prakrit languages using the Brahmi script, states that the Mahastupa was built during the reign of Rudrasena for the prosperity of Dharma and the Sangha in north Gujarat around 400 CE. It suggests the involvement of local rulers and highlights the site's significance to the Buddhist community during that period.

5. How is Devnimori relevant to the spread of Buddhism in Gujarat?

Devnimori is an important part of the historical narrative of Buddhism's spread in Gujarat. Alongside other significant sites like Junagadh and Vadnagar, it was strategically located on ancient trade routes that facilitated the dissemination of Buddhist teachings across the region. The discovery of sacred relics further underscores its importance as a key religious center during the early historic period.


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