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Jain sculptures in Gwalior
Gwalior is an important city in Madhya Pradesh, India. It is rich in architectural marvels. The fort situated 100 m above from the town of Gwalior is the main attraction here. The path leading to the fort from the southern side comprise of many Jain sculptures that are dated back to 15th century. The Jain sculptures in Gwalior can be categorized into five groups. The most important group is the southeastern group, which contains nearly 20 images. The sculpture of the first of the 24 Jain Trithankaras can be found in Image 20, belonging to the Arwahi group. It is a colossal figure of seated Adinatha. The sculpture is different from other sculptures of Trithankaras, as it features the symbol of the bull.
The most inspiring Jain sculpture is the figure of Neminatha, the 22nd Tirthankar. You would be astonished to see the 30 feet figure of the seated Neminatha, with a symbol of a shell on a pedestal. The tallest Jain sculpture in Gwalior is noted for its rigid posture and rounded form. In addition to Jain sculpture, you can also see a beautiful statue of Shiva and Parvati near the Urwahi gate of the fort. This sculpture is dated back to 7th century. A sculpture of a reclining mother and child is a must see image here. The interesting feature of the Jain sculptures is that they were excavated within a short period between 1441 and 1474.
The Jain sculptures in Gwalior were defaced by the pillaging armies of the Mughal emperor Babur in 1527, but they were later restored.
© 2009 Abiyoyo SL
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"in this ugly time, the only true protest is beauty" (Phil Ochs)