Early Buddhist architecture of Bengal: morphological study on the vihāra of c. 3rd to 8th centuries

Reza, M.H., 2012. Early Buddhist architecture of Bengal: morphological study on the vihāra of c. 3rd to 8th centuries. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.


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This dissertation examines the evolution of early Buddhist architectural forms of Bengal, specifically its vihāra and shrine structures. In general, this research explores Gupta and post-Gupta (c. third to eighth centuries AD) vihāra architecture of Bengal, where the primary focus is on the Buddhist shrine architecture constructed during this period. There is a preconception amongst historians that the period between the Gupta and the Pāla periods was characterized by disorder and chaos, commonly known as the period of Matsyanyayam. This is the reason why discussions on the architectural history of Bengal have generally commenced from the Pāla period (c. 750 AD onwards). Analyzing extant and new evidences this study argues that the Buddhist architecture of Bengal thrived during the intervening period, albeit under the patronage of local kings and rulers. In the field of art and sculpture it is accepted that Buddhist Pāla art was a continuation of previous Gupta art forms, where post-Gupta period acted as the transition or a bridge. Following this general pattern, as this thesis argues, the rectangular Gupta shrine plan takes a mature cruciform shape during the Pāla period through a complex morphological development. The nature of Buddhist shrine architecture in Bengal during the early Gupta, later Gupta, and post-Gupta periods is described in the light of analyzed archaeological findings and architectural trends.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Reza, M.H.
Date: 2012
Rights: This work is the intellectual property of the author. You may copy up to 5% of this work for private study, or personal, non-commercial research. Any re-use of the information contained within this document should be fully referenced, quoting the author, title, university, degree level and pagination. Queries or requests for any other use, or if a more substantial copy is required, should be directed to the owner of the Intellectual Property Rights.
Divisions: Schools > School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment
Record created by: EPrints Services
Date Added: 09 Oct 2015 09:34
Last Modified: 09 Oct 2015 09:35
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/200

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