National Institute of Informatics - Digital Silk Road Project
Digital Archive of Toyo Bunko Rare Books

> > > >
Color New!IIIF Color HighRes Gray HighRes PDF   Japanese English
0125 Ancient Khotan : vol.1
Ancient Khotan : vol.1 / Page 125 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

New!Citation Information

doi: 10.20676/00000182
Citation Format: Chicago | APA | Harvard | IEEE

OCR Text


Sec. ii]   THE RUINS NEAR KHAN-UI   83

such relics as it may have once contained had been successfully abstracted. From the foot of the north-west face and on the ground-level, a passage, apparently of more recent date, has been tunnelled deep into the solid masonry of the base.

In the central shaft of the Mauri-Tim Stupa we have an exact counterpart of that small square chamber which I found, more injured, but still clearly recognizable, within the domes of the ruined Stupas of Takhtaband in Bunér, and of Balar near ancient Taxila 10. Judging from somewhat vague descriptions, it may be assumed to have existed also in the Manikyala Stûpa, and in the numerous Stûpas of the Kabul Valley which were ` explored ' before and during the several Afghan campaigns 11. But the identity of this feature only helps to emphasize still more clearly the close agreement which exists in regard to general architectural arrangement between all Turkestan Stûpas examined by me, and the corresponding structures extant in the Kabul Valley and on the Indian north-west frontier. The Stupas of Mauri-Tim, Topa-Tim, Niya, Endere, and Rawak all show the dome, which is the essential and unvarying feature of every Stûpa, raised on a square base, and this again arranged in three stories. The relative proportion between these stories varies considerably in the several structures, and so also do the shape of the dome and the relative height of the cylindrical portion or drum which intervenes between the top story of the base and the cupola proper. But the square shape of the base and its threefold arrangement are constant features, and the former in any case is characteristic also of the great majority of Stupas in the border-lands of India and Afghanistan. On the other hand the round base, which belongs to an earlier stage of Stûpa construction, is represented in those territories only by a few examples, and seems completely absent in Eastern Turkestan".

An interesting notice of Hsüan-tsang, the true significance of which was first recognized by M. A. Foucher, informs us that the Turkestan Stûpas, with their square bases arranged in three stories, strictly conform to the manner of construction prescribed by a sacred tradition current in Buddhist territories beyond the Indus. In describing certain small Stupas in the vicinity of Po-ho or Balkh, the pilgrim relates how Buddha taught his first two disciples the right way of venerating . some relics of his person he had given them. First he took his Sanghati robe, and folding it into a square shape, laid it on the ground ; over it he placed his Uttarasanga, and next over this his Sarikaksika. On the top of these garments he put his begging-bowl turned upside down, on which again he raised his mendicant's staff. ` Thus he placed them in order, making thereby [the figure of] a Stûpa. The two men taking the order, each went to his own town, and then, according to the model which the holy one had prescribed, they prepared to build a monument, and thus was the very first Stupa of the Buddhist religion erected 13.' There can be no doubt that, as explained by M. Foucher, the three garments, folded into squares, with the largest below and the smallest on the top, represent the three

10 Compare my Report on an Archaeological tour with the Bunér Field Force, p. 4o ; pl. viii ; also Indian Antiquary, 190o, p. 145. In both these ruins the chamber was a cube of approximately 7 feet.

11 See Cunningham, Archaeol. Survey Reports, v., pl. xxii ; Foucher, L'Art du Gandhâra, i. p. 86.

12 [For all points bearing on the development of Stupa architecture in India M. Foucher's lucid and amply illustrated remarks, L'Art du Gandhâra, i. pp. 62-98, must now be compared. The arrangement of the Turkestan Stupas conforms closely to the type of what M. Foucher treats as ` Les Stupa " Transition " ' ; see ibid., pp. 72 sqq.]

'$ See Si-yu-ki, transl. Beal, i. pp. 47 sq. The correct interpretation of the several features of a Stupa symbolized in the legend has been given in the note contributed by M. Foucher to M. Chavannes' Voyage de Song Yun, p. 17, n. 5. The reference in the latter text explained by Hsüantsang's passage is to the first Stupa in Khotan which, according to the injunction of its legendary founder, Vairocana, is said to have been erected in the shape of a ` Pâlra renversé' ; compare below, chap. vtm sec. v. [See now also Foucher, L'Art du Gandhâra, pp. 63 sq. ; Watters, Yuan Chwang, i. p. r12.]

Architectural type of Turkestan Stupas.

Traditional account of Stupa construction.

M 2