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0088 Archaeological Reconnaissances in North-Western India and South-Eastern Īrān : vol.1
Archaeological Reconnaissances in North-Western India and South-Eastern Īrān : vol.1 / Page 88 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000189
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windows of the north wall clearly show that it dates considerably farther back than the temples by its side and behind it. The same applies also to what little is left of an ante-room or porch which appears to have faced this hall on the east.

Cunningham already had rightly recognized the remains of a far older structure in a large ruined base, F, which rises in a field to the east of the temple group and at a distance of about 30 yards from the foot of the lowest of the terrace walls below it ( Fig. 13 ) . This base, which in Cunningham's time still measured 682 by 562 feet, has since suffered considerably in size and state of preservation through depredations for building material. But its south side still shows the design dividing it `into a number of small panels or recesses by broad pilasters after the style of the tope basement at Mànikyâla', as described by him.

A recent clearing done for the Archaeological Department, under which the ruins have now passed as a `Protected Monument',9 has revealed behind this wall of the base an earlier stuccoed facing, also decorated with pilasters but here plain and lacking the brackets seen on the outside. It appeared to me evident that the base had obviously been enlarged at some subsequent period and that it had once belonged to a Buddhist stûpa. The care which has been taken to clear the ground around for cultivation sufficiently explains why nothing is left now of the debris which would otherwise have remained of the fallen dome and drum of the stûpa once rising above the base. The numerous large mansions erected around the sacred pool by Hindu chiefs and other wealthy pilgrims must have been largely built with materials abstracted from the ruined structures of the site.

I have thought this brief review of the ruins still to be seen at Ketâs desirable as they afford convincing proof that the site retains remains older than Hsüantsang's time and of a type pointing to a place of importance. Of the large base F just referred to it appears to me highly probable that it formed part of the `Anoka stûpa' which the pilgrim found already in a state of decay. On the massive terraces rising above this ruin may have stood the buildings of that Buddhist monastery which at the time of his visit was already quite deserted. `Continuity of local worship' would help to account for the use made of the same spot for Hindu shrines during the centuries immediately following.

But for definite proof of the identification of the capital of Simhapura with

9 Since the above was written, R. B. Daya Ram Sahni, C.I.E., lately Director-General of Archaeology in India, has been good enough to refer me to the Annual Progress Report of the Superintendent, Hindu and Buddhist Monuments, Northern Circle,

Archaeological Survey, for 1918-19, pp. 11 sq., in which his inspection of the Ketâs temples is briefly recorded. The excavation at the mound F mentioned below was carried out by him. Drawings of plans were then made, but have not been published.