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Walter Spink

Volume Five comprises, along with introductory comments, two "cave by cave" guides. One which, very briefly, describes the character of each cave and its patronage, is intended to be useful for the general visitor to the site. The other, very detailed, discusses the position and peculiarities of each cave in relation to the overall, year by year, development of the site. This volume also contains a complete set of cave plans, and various illuminating charts, graphs, outlines, and maps.

Dharma, Disorder and the Political in Ancient India

The Āpaddharmaparvan of the Mahābhārata


Adam Bowles

The Āpaddharmaparvan, 'the book on conduct in times of distress', is an important section of the great Sanskrit epic the Mahābhārata which, despite its significance for Mahābhārata studies and for the history of Indian social and political thought, has received little attention in scholarly literature. This book places the Āpaddharmaparvan within its literary and ideological contexts. In so doing it explores the development of a conception of brahmanic kingship morally justifiable within the terms of a debate largely set by various alternative social movements of the period. This book further explores the implications for our understanding of the Mahābhārata that follow from the Āpaddharmaparvan's presentation as a poetically cohesive unit within itself and within the wider parameters of the Mahābhārata.

Greater Magadha

Studies in the Culture of Early India


Johannes Bronkhorst

Greater Magadha, roughly the eastern part of the Gangetic plain of northern India, has so far been looked upon as deeply indebted to Brahmanical culture. Religions such as Buddhism and Jainism are thought of as derived, in one way or another, from Vedic religion. This belief is defective in various respects. This book argues for the importance and independence of Greater Magadha as a cultural area until a date close to the beginning of the Common Era. In order to correct the incorrect notions, two types of questions are dealt with: questions pertaining to cultural and religious dependencies, and questions relating to chronology. As a result a modified picture arises that also has a bearing on the further development of Indian culture.


Sonya Rhie Quintanilla

This volume provides the first comprehensive analysis and chronology of the earliest known stone sculptures from the north Indian city of Mathura, dating prior to the famous Kushan period. It includes numerous new attributions of objects based primarily on epigraphic and visual analysis. The sculptures attributable to these pre-Kushan periods reveal new evidence for the reasons behind the emergence of the anthropomorphic image of the Buddha at Mathura, the predominance of a heterodox sect of Jainism, and the proliferation of cults of nature divinities. This book provides a wealth of reference material useful for historians of early Indian art, religion, and epigraphy.
The book is illustrated with over three hundred photographs, and it includes epigraphic appendices with complete transcriptions and updated translations.

Sarasvatī: Riverine Goddess of Knowledge

From the Manuscript-carrying Vīṇā-player to the Weapon-wielding Defender of the Dharma


Catherine Ludvik

This is a fascinating depiction of the transformation of the Indian riverine goddess from the manuscript-carrying vīṇā-player to the Buddhist weapon-wielding defender of the Dharma.
Drawing on Sanskrit and Chinese textual sources, as well as Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist art historical representations, this book traces the conceptual and iconographic development of the riverine goddess of knowledge Sarasvatī from some time after 1750 B.C.E. to the seventh century C.E. Through the study of Chinese translations of no longer extant Sanskrit versions of the Buddhist Sutra of Golden Light the author sheds light on Sarasvatī's interactions with other Indian goddess cults and their impact on one another.


Anna Slaczka

As in various other cultures, in the Hindu tradition of the Indian Subcontinent construction rituals accompany the construction of a temple, from the moment of choosing the suitable building site, right to the completion of the entire project. Numerous descriptions in Sanskrit texts on ritual and architecture describe in detail these building consecration ceremonies and reflect the importance attached to these rituals. Surprisingly, this topic has so far not received the attention it deserves given its essential role.
Basing herself on both the Sanskrit texts, as well as the archaeological finds, Anna A. Ślączka in this thorough study provides readers with a comprehensive view of the three main temple construction rituals in the Hindu tradition of South and Southeast Asia.

Animals in Stone

Indian Mammals Sculptured Through Time


Alexandra van der Geer

The art history of South Asia covers a time span of roughly four and a half thousand years. During this period, a vast number of animal stone sculptures has been produced, ranging from the pre-historic period till today and covering a great variety of motifs and imagery in different regions and religious traditions. Even so, the number of studies devoted to these animal sculptures has remained extremely limited. The present book aims at filling this knowledge gap. With this richly illustrated book, the first of its kind, Van der Geer offers a comparative study of the ways in which various animals have been depicted and a lucid analysis of the sculptors’ treatment of their “models”: living animals. The art history of sculptured animals is contextualized with a description of the use of animals as can be read from ancient texts, archaeological evidence and contemporaneous culture. In doing so, parallels as well as differences in style or iconography are highlighted, elucidating the variety of animal depictions across regions, religious contexts and through time. The corpus of discussed material ranges from Indus seals, stupa panels and railings, monumental temples from North and South India, non-religious palace and fort architecture to loose sculptures in museum collections.


Roland Wenzlhuemer

In the early 1880s a disastrous plant disease diminished the yields of the hitherto flourishing coffee plantation of Ceylon. Coincidentally, world market conditions for coffee were becoming increasingly unfavourable. The combination of these factors brought a swift end to coffee cultivation in the British crown colony and pushed the island into a severe economic crisis.
When Ceylon re-emerged from this crisis only a decade later, its economy had been thoroughly transformed and now rested on the large-scale cultivation of tea. This book uses the unprecedented intensity and swiftness of this process to highlight the socioeconomic interconnections and dependencies in tropical export economies in the late nineteenth century and it shows how dramatically Ceylonese society was affected by the economic transformation.

Himalayan Tribal Tales

Oral Tradition and Culture in the Apatani Valley


Stuart Blackburn

This study of an oral tradition in northeast India is the first of its kind in this part of the eastern Himalayas. A comparative analysis reveals parallel stories in an area stretching from central Arunachal Pradesh into upland Southeast Asia and southwest China.
The subject of the volume, the Apatanis, are a small population of Tibeto-Burman speakers who live in a narrow valley halfway between Tibet and Assam. Their origin myths, migration legends, oral histories, trickster tales and ritual chants, as well as performance contexts and genre system, reveal key cultural ideas and social practices, shifts in tribal identity and the reinvention of religion.

Indian Islamic Architecture

Forms and Typologies, Sites and Monuments


John Burton-Page

Edited by George Michell

The British scholar John Burton-Page contributed numerous formative articles on Indian Islamic architecture for the Encyclopaedia of Islam over a period of 25 years. Assembled here for the first time, these offer an insightful overview of the subject, ranging from the earliest mosques and tombs erected by the Delhi sultans in the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, to the great monuments of the Mughal emperors dating from the 16th and 17th centuries. The articles cover the principal forms of Indian Islamic architecture -- mosques, tombs, minarets, forts, gateways and water structures -- as well as the most important sites and their monuments. Unsurpassed for their compression of information, these succinct articles serve as the best possible introduction to the subject, indispensible for both students and travellers. The articles are supplemented by a portfolio of photographs especially selected for the volume, as well as a glossary and up to date bibliography.