Bengal Gupta Viharas: Did such a Phenomenon Exist?

By Mohammad Habib Reza.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper focuses on the vihara architecture of Bengal constructed during the period of the Gupta dynasty (320 AD- 550 AD), a time when the Indian sub continent was enjoying its Golden Age in art and architecture. Archaeological research in the region of Bengal has revealed traces of numerous Buddhist religious structures from fifth until the eleventh century AD. Physical conditions of most of these structures are extremely poor, making the establishment of its detailed architectural characteristics almost impossible. However, from archaeological excavations scholars have been able to establish the layout, architectural plan and spatial organization of these structures. Relatively little archeological work has been conducted on the Gupta legacy, especially in Bengal; it is difficult therefore to determine the characteristics of the architectural style solely from the archeological evidence of that particular period. Evidence from the post-Gupta dynasties, such as the Gouda, Khadga, Vardhan and mainly the Pala, also bear evidences of Gupta influence on later periods. This study uses available archaeological, geographical, historical and social-anthropological resources to explore possible existence of the Gupta vihara architecture of Bengal.

Keywords: Bengal, Gupta Vihara, Buddhist Monastery

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 3, Issue 5, pp.211-216. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.763MB).

Dr Mohammad Habib Reza

MPhil student, Department of Architecture, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK

Md. Habib Reza has a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Khulna, Bangladesh, specializing in Buddhist architecture. He worked in different architectural consulting company for couple of years. Now, He is working as an architect cum Planner of a city council in Bangladesh, since the last three years. He is an MPhil student at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom, researching the Buddhist architecture of Bengal.

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