ROCK-CUT Jain Gwalior

By Sanjeev Nayyar Sanjeev@esamskriti.com | 2020

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1. There are 5 rock-cut Jain monuments in Gopalachal Hill Gwalior. We present two, ones at Urwai Gate that you see and Chand Baori. When you drive up to the fort you see this on either side of the road. Reminded me of Ellora caves, not as profound but the height of sculptures is amazing.

2. Figures represent sculptures of the 24 Jain Tirthankaras, the largest amongst them is that of Adhinath at 57 feet. These were carved out during the reign of the Tomar King Dungar Singh in the 15th century.

3. No boards to identify which sculpture if of which Tirthankara. This is the main work on Uri Gate side. This group is known as Sidhanchal.

4. Love the elephants everywhere.

5. Pranams.

6. Toran on entrance to one cave. Good work, early morning sun.

7. Inside one of caves, must be Tirthankaras.

8. One more cave.

9. This is on opposite side of the road. See the 57 feet statue of Adhinath. Close by is the Southwest Group which I missed seeing. Here is a good album https://kevinstandagephotography.wordpress.com/2019/03/25/the-rock-cut-jain-monuments-of-gwalior-sw-group/

10. Face damaged. Heavy traffic on road, be patient to click. I used my cell phone to click these two pics not the best. To see a very good album on Sidhanchal https://kevinstandagephotography.wordpress.com/2019/03/25/the-rock-cut-jain-monuments-of-gwalior-siddhanchal-urvai-group/

11. The next collection is on a different road, is called Rock-cut Jain Colossi – Ek Pathar Ki Baori. Amazing must visit, reached about 5 pm. Wish I had gone in the morning. U climb up hill well paved, saw numerous peacocks enroute. Walk is like thru a dense forest.

12. Large & small Jain Tirthankaras in caves and niches. These were made during the reign of Tomar Kind Dungar Singh (1425-1459). There is Baoli (step-well) but that was closed.

13. Overview of caves and niches, there are 7 big sculptures of which three have no heads. Was told these were destroyed during Mughal rule.

14. This is next to the big 7. In most cases faces mutilated.

15. Inside cave, note the quality of work. Gopalchal Parvat has 18 colossal murthis, some up to 10 m tall. Not seen so many big statues anywhere in India.

16. Pranams. Small temples at base of cave. Below murthi is animal think lion on either side, above which is cow.

17. Elephants on either side. Note the design of what covers the head of Tirthankara. It is semi-circular. Said that faces were mutilated under Akbar’s orders.

18. Top temple, inside Tirthankara, deities on either side of entrance.

19. Inside cave. Friends do go in the morning when sunlight enters caves. My schedule was too hectic so could not visit again in morning.

20. Love the two levels. How did they make it? Can technology replicate today.

21. Head of Tirthankara covered. On either side see two beings with what I would call fans in modern day parlance.

22. Inside the cave, temple of stone mein murti.

23. Again inside the cave. There is Jain Teerth office at base but otherwise not a soul except the watchman.

24. Another cave. Look at design – leavings windows.

25. Pranams.

26. Pranams. Mutilated faces.

27. Design seems common, feet on an elevated piece of rock-head covered with intricately carved stone, elephants above that.

28. Pranams.

29. This I think is Parshavnath, the second Tirthankara.

30. Close up. Base animals, above that cow. Sitting in I think mudra posture. Elephants above head but nothing to cover head.

31. Same close up of face. Heads of two sculptures on either side of Tirthankara mutilated.

32. Close-up of base, intricate work. Looks like lion on either side with cow above them.

33. This one was high up, the closest I could get.

34. Another Tirthankara.

35. Same design, head covered with elephants above that. In case of errors in captions or suggestions on how we can do better do mail.

36. Out of 7 only two faces remain.

37. Temple inside the rock. Inside temple centre is Tirthankara.

38. Close up of remaining two, should have taken a side pic instead.

39. The roof too has a design. Archaeological Survey done a good job in maintaining the place.

40. Earlier pic, loved it so showing again without the murtis below.

41. Lights came on as it was getting dark. This is how it looks. It is lit all night. To see a good album https://kevinstandagephotography.wordpress.com/2019/03/25/the-rock-cut-jain-monuments-of-gwalior-gopachal-parvat-se-group/

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