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Author:Laxman Burdak IFS (R)
Sanchi Stupa
Location of Sanchi in Raisen District

Sanchi (सांची) is a small village in Raisen tahsil and District of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is located 46 km north east of Bhopal, and 10 km from Besnagar and Vidisha in the central part of the state of Madhya Pradesh. It is the location of several Buddhist monuments dating from the third century BCE to the twelfth century CE and is one of the important places of Buddhist pilgrimage.

The 'Great Stupa' at Sanchi was originally commissioned by the emperor Ashoka the Great in the third century BCE. Its nucleus was a simple hemispherical brick structure built over the relics of the Buddha.


Inscriptions at Sanchi

We have taken the following information about Inscriptions at Sanchi mainly from Chapter XVI of the book The Bhilsa topes; or, Buddhist monuments of central India:. It is Wikified here page wise for further research and studies.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 235

Inscriptions.— No. I. Tope — Sanchi

From North to East — Inside

Plate XVI.

No. 1. — Kekaṭeyapurasa Dhama-Sivasa dānam.

" Gift of DHARMA Siva of Kekaṭeyapura.

This is No. 21 of James Prinsep's Sanchi inscriptions.† He reads Kekateyakasa as a part of the donor's name.

No. 2. — Hanā-bhichhuniyā dānam.

" Gift of Hana, the mendicant nun."

No. 3. — Vaja-Gutasa dānam.

" Gift of Vajra-Gupta."

This is No. 25 of Prinsep, who reads Vajāgato-dānam, " Gift of Vrijagān" because in Pali ān becomes āto in the genitive ; but he has omitted the vowel u, and the final s in gutasa, both of which are very distinct even in his own facsimile.

The Nos. of James Prinsep's inscriptions are taken from the Plates in his Journal— vol. vi., Plate XXVII., and vol. vii., Plate XXIII. ; the lesser Nos. being in the former Plate; and the greater Nos. in the latter.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 236

No. 4. — Dhamagirikasa — mātu-dānam.

" Gift of Dharmagirika's mother."

Prinsep, No. 5, reads Dhamagālika, but the vowels are very distinct in the inscription.

No. 5. — Kekaṭeyakasa Jamata Vijitasa dānam.

"Gift of Janamata Vrijita of Kekateyaka"

No. 6. — Kādasa-bhichhuno- dānam.

" Gift of Kanda, the mendicant monk."

Prinsep, No. 15, translates bhichhuno, "poor man" but the Bhikshu was a mendicant who had taken vows of poverty and who begged his bread.

No. 7. — Devo-bhāg (iniya) Dhamanaka (ya) bhichhuniye dānam"

" Gift of Deva's sister, Dharmanakā; the mendicant mm."

From East to South — Inside

No, 8. — Vākalāye Deviye Ahi-Mitama (tu-dānam).

" (Gift of) Vakala-Devi, the mother of Ahi-Mitra."

Prinsep, No. 40, reads Akilaye Deviye ahi matu mara ; but the vowel i in Mita is distinct even in his own lac-simile. The mother's name is nearly the same as that of No. 11.

No. 9. — Phaguyavasa . . ikaya.

"Of Phalguna the Upāsikā

No. 10. — Nagadinasa-bhichhuno-dānam.

" Gift of Nagadina, the mendicant monk."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 237

No. 11. — Ujeniya Vākiliyānā dānam.

"Gift of Vakiliyan of Ujjain."

See No. 76 for another gift of this person.

No. 12. — Ujeniya Gopālasa- Visa(ka)masa-dānam.

" Gift of Gopala Viswakarma (the architect) of Ujjain."

No . 13 . — Ayapasanakasa — bhichhuno-dānam .

" Gift of Arya-Prasanaka, the mendicant monk."

No. 14:. — Nadinagara Achalaya-bhikhuniya dānam.

" Gift of Achala, the mendicant nun of Nadinagara.

No. 15. — Nadinagarā Kabojasa-bhikhuno dānam.

" Gift of Kamboja; the mendicant monk of Nadinagara."

From South to West Gate — Inside.

No. 16. — Siha-Rakhitasa-pajavatia Sono Devaya dānam.

" Gift of Sinha-Rakshita's sister-in-law, Sona-Deva."

Pajavati is the Sanskrit Prajāvati, a brother's wife. Prinsep, No. 8; reads this inscription quite differently : —

Siha-rakhitasa-paravatiyasa-rudovāya dānam.
" Gift of Sri (or Sinha) Rakhita, the hill man, to Rudova? "

but the lady's name is again mentioned in the next inscription : —

No. 17. — Sono-Devaya-parijaya Agiḍoviyadha-dānam.

" Gift of Sona-Deva's servant, Agni, the washerman" (?)

No. 18. — Subhagāyasa-bhāginikaya-dānam.

" Gift of Subhagāya's sister."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 238

Prinsep, No. 7, reads Sahhageyamasa-aginikeya dānam, " Gift of Sabhageya the fireman (or black-smith); but I had the letters of all the inscriptions well cleaned before I copied them, and I have full confidence in my own transcript (See No. 36 for a gift of Subhaga himself) : —

No. 19. — Dhama-Rakhitasa—bhichhuno-dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Rakshita, the mendicant monk,"

No. 20. — A(ya)sa-kamakasa-dānam.

" Gift of Arya-Karmaka."

No. 21 . — Pusagirino — bhichhuno-dānam.

" Gift of Pusagiri, the mendicant monk."

No. 22. — . . . pasa-kama Chaḍa bhkhuniya dānam.

" Gift of . . . pakarma Chanda the mercant Nun."

No. 23. — Samanerasa Abeyakasa Sethino dānam.

" Gift of the ascetic Abeyaka, the Sreshti." (See

No. 124.)

Sreshti means the master of a trade or guild; a " deacon" in Scotland. Prinsep, Nos. 4 and 11, makes Samanera a man's name and reads "Gift of Samanera and of Abeyaka but the omission of the conjunction cha, which should follow each name (if this were the true reading) shows that Samanera is only the common title of श्रामणीर, Sramanera, an ascetic.

No. 24. — Pati-bānasa bhichhuno Pādayasa Atevāsino dānam.

" Gift of Pratiban, the mendicant monk; pupil of Pāndaya

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 239

No. 25. — Udubaraghariyasa Sa . . . Rakhitasa-dānam.

" Gift of Sandha Rakshita,of Udubaraghariya."

This inscription has puzzled Prinsep from its rudeness.

No. 26. — Udatikaye bhichhuni Vedisikayā dānam.

"Gift of Udatika, the mendicant nun of Vidisha."

From West to North Gate.— (Inside.)

No. 27. — Yasojpālasa-da(nam) Bhadanaka.

" Gift of Yasopāla, the fortunate?"

No. 28. — Mahamaragimusapagirino-dānam.

" Gift of Sarpagiri, the . . .

No. 29. — Pusasa-cha-Haṭiyasa bhichhunodānam.

"Gift of Pusa and of Hatiya, the mendicant monks."

No. 30. — Dhama Rahhitaya Madhava-nikāye dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Rakshita, of the Madhava community."

नकाय nihaya, means an assembly, a congregation.

No. 31. — Dhana-bhikhuno dānam.

" Gift of Dhana, the mendicant monk."

No. 32. — (Ga) ha-patino Budha Ghosa . . .

" (Gift of) the householder, Budha Ghosha."

No 33. — Gotiputasa Bhadukasa bhichhuno dānam.

"Gift of Goti's son, Bhanduka, the mendicant monk."

See No. 110 for another son of Goti. See also the relic bones of Sanchi, Sonari, and Andher, for other sons of the same teacher.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 240

No. 34. — Vejajasa-gāmasa-dānam.

" Gift of Vejajjagrama."

Prinsep, No. 10, suggests that the population of a village, called Vrijarama, combined to make this offering-- but the name is most probably that of a man.

No. 35. — Araha-Gutasa Sāsādakasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Arhata Gupta, a mendicant monk of the Sāsārdaka order."

Sāsan is 'devotion' and arda means "to beg;" Sāsārdaka therefore, means a religious mendicant, but as Bhikshu has the same signification, I have considered the former as the title of a particular class or order.

No. 36. — Sabhagasa Koragharasa dānam.

" Gift of Subhaga, of Koraghara.

(See No. 18 for a gift of Subhaga's sister.)

No. 87. — Aya Rahilasa Sārhineyakasa-Mātu dānam.

"Gift of Arva Rahila, the mother of Sarhineyaha.

There is a grammatical mistake in the masculine termination of the female name, which should have been Rahilaya. The son's name may be read Saphineyaka.

From East Gate— Outside.

No. 38. — Vadānāye Upasikāyā dānam.

" Gift of Vadana, the Upāsikā."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 241

Upasikā means literally a 'worshipper' or rather a " female worshipper." M. Burnouf* renders this term by " devotee" which certainly appears to be the best equivalent for it. I consider the Upāsaka and Upasikā as male and female devotees who had not taken the vows of celibacy and mendicancy professed by the Bhikshu and Bhikshuni.

No. 39. — Kākanāye Bhagavatopamona-lathi ; or Kākenoye Bhagavatopamāne-rathi,

as Prinsep, No. 18, reads it; but he gives no translation. I can only suggest Bhagavata-upamanorathi, which may be translated —

" Gift of Kākanā, an anxious longer for Bhagavat."

Manoratha is " wish,desire" and upa means "excess of anything-." Bhag-avata is the "Supreme Being" and is often applied to Buddha.

No. 40. — Tubavani-gahapatinopatithiya-nasāya-visamana- datiya-dānam ; or Gobavanā-gahapati-nopatidhiyanusaya vesa-man-dataya dānam,

according- to Prinsep, No. 6, who thus translates

* Introduction ā l'Histoire du Buddhisme Indien, p. 279 — "La lecture attentive des textes, et quelques autorites non moins respectable ā mes yeux que celles que je viens de citer, m'ont decide en faveur du sens de devot ou Jidele." See also Wilson's Hindu Theatre, i. 123, where the heroine of the Mrichhakati is called Buddhopāsikā the " devoted-to-Buddha."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 242

it : " Gift of the cowherd Agrapati, commonly called Nopati, to the highly ornamented (Chaitya) :" but Agrapati would be written Agapati, and not Agahapati. In fact, gahapatino is the Pali genitive of the Sanskrit grihapati, a " householder' and the inscription may be read thus : —

" Gift of Visarmana-Datti the . . . of Pratisthiya, a householer of Tubavana."

taking- patithiya for pratisthiya. The next inscription, which is four times repeated, refers to the same person, and proves the correctness of my reading. It is Prinsep's No. 9.

No. 41 . — Tubavani-gahapatino-patithiyasa-dānam.

" Gift of Pratisthiya, a Householder of Tubavan."

No. 42. — Namāmakādisā rakhitasa dānam.

" Gift of Isa-Rakshita, of Narmamakādi " ?

No. 43. — Nadavuno-cha Nadisirohisa-cha dānam.

" Gift both of Nandabu and of Nadisirohi."

No. 44. — Pothā Detāya dānam.

" Gift of Potha-Devā."

No. 45. — Kandarigāmiyasa - Sethino pajavatiya Nāgāya- dānam.

" Gift of Naga, the sister-in-law of the Sreshti of


No. 46. — Kandarigāmiyasa - Sethino - pajavatiya - Dāsaya- dānam.

"Gift of Dasa, the sister-in-law of the Sreshti of


The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 243

No. 47. — Kandarigāmā-varhasa dānam.

" Gift of Varha, of Kandarigrāma"

Kandarigrāma, or grāmiya, must have been a considerable place, or it would not have had a Sreshti.

No. 48. — Mulagirino dānam lekhakasa.

" Gift of Mulagiri; the scribe."

Prinsep, No. 30, reads lakhakasa, the " millionaire." But the inscription occurs twice, and is quite distinct.

No. 49. — Ujeniyi

No. 50. — Yakhadānasa-bhhikhuno-dānam,

" Gift of Yakshadana, the mendicant monk."

No. 51. — Padonāya- Upasikākaya-dānam.

" Gift of Padona, the devotee."

No. 52.— . . . rahasavānodasa Isadatasa-dānam.

" Gift of Isa-datta, the humble in all things" ?

I have taken savānoda as a compound of sarvva, " all" and anuddhat, humility but this rendering- is a mere conjecture.

No. 53. — Navāgāmikanā Upasikāna-dānam.

" Gift of Navāgāmikā, the devotee."

No. 54. — Isi-Mitāyu Vahilasa dānam.

"Gift of Isi-Mitra of Vahila, (Bhilsa ?)"

This inscription is on the coping- to the north-east.

No. 55. — Ujeniya Rohuniya dānam.

" Gift of Rohuni of Ujain."

No. 56. — Ujeniya Dhamagirino-dānam.

" Gift of Dharmagiri of Ujain."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 244

Prinsep, No. 29, reads Dhamagilino, but the meaning of the name remains unchanged, the two liquid letters 'r' and 'l' being constantly used the one for the other.

No. 57. — Ujeniya Sonasa dānam.

"Gift of Sona of Ujjain."

No. 58. — Ujeniya Tapasayāna Pusānajaya dānam.

" Gift of the tapasyā (ascetic) Pusānajā of Ujain."

Prinsep, No. 35, reads punsanamjaya, and translates " The victory gift of the people performing austerities at Ujain." But tapasyā is only a title, like that of Bhikshu or Upāsika ; and it is not easy to imagine how the gift of a stone-slab could have anything- to do with a victory.

No. 59. — Ujeniya Tapasayana Isi Mitasā-dānam.

"Gift of the ascetic Isi-Mita of Ujain."

Prinsep, No. 32, reads Isi-mātasa and translates,

'The gift of the body of rishis performing their austerities at Ujjain."

No. 60. — Ujeniya Mula-dataye dānam.

" Gift of MULA-DATTA of Ujjain."

No. 6l. — Ujeniya Balakaya dānam.

"Gift of Balakā of Ujain"

No. 62. — Ujeniya Upedadatasa — pajavataya Maya-dataya dānam.

" Gift of Mayadatta, the sister-in-law of

Upendradatta of Ujain."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 245

Prinsep, No. 34_, reads padavalayuchhaya and translates, " The gift of Upendradatta of Ujain, for a perpetual charity to the itinerants." But it is difficult to conceive how the gift of a stone to the Sanchi enclosure could form a charity to anybody. The correctness of my reading is proved by the two following- inscriptions. Upendradatta's own gift is recorded in No. 90.

No. 63. — Ujeniya Upedadatasa bhaginiya Himadataya dānam,

" Gift of HIMADATTA, the sister of Upendradatta of Ujain."

No. 64. — Ujeniya Upedadatasa bhaginiya Budhaye-dānam.

" Gift of Buddha, the sister of Upendradatta of


No. 65. — Ujeniya Kadiye bhichhuniye dānam.

" Gift of Kadru, the mendicant nun of Ujjain."

No. 66. — Ujeniya Chheta-mātu dānam.

" Gift of Chhetra's mother of Ujjain.

Prinsep, No. 81, prefers 'Kshatra's mother, but the meaning is exactly the same.

No. 67. — Ujeniya Tapasiyena Siha-dataya dānam.

" Gift of the Ascetic Sinha-datta of Ujain."

This is probably the same inscription as Prinsep's No. 37. If so the 'p' of Tapasiyena has been omitted.

No. 68. — Ujeniya Saphineyakina Isakasa dānam .

" Gift of Isaka, the Saphineyaki (?)of Ujain."

Prinsep, No. 33, translates " The gift of the

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 246

morality students of Ujain to the rishis." By reading savineyaka, as Prinsep has done, the translation would rather be " learned in Vinaya" which was the name of the lowest class of Buddhist scriptures.

No. 69. — Kuraghara Isi Mitaya dānam.

" Gift of Isi Mitra of Kuraghara."

No. 70. — Ujeniya Vipulaya dānam.

" Gift of Vipula of Ujain."

No. 71. — Kuraghara Naraya dānam.

" Gift of Nara of Kuraghara."

No. 72. — Kuraghari Naga Mitaya dānam.

"Gift of Nagamitra of Kuraghari."

No. 73. — Bodhe Gothiye Dhama Varhanana dānam.

" Gift of Bodhi-Gothi for the advancement of Dharma."

No. 74. — Nagadinasa-bhichhmo dānam.

" Gift of Nagadina, the mendicant monk."

No. 75. — Phaguyavasa .. rikāya.

" (Gift of) Phalguna . . ." (See No. 9.)

No. 76. — Ujeniya Vakiliyānā dānam.

" Gift of Vakiliyan of Ujain."

Prinsep, No. 28, reads Phahiliyānām, and translates Gift of subscribers of Ujain." See No. 11 for another of this person's gifts.

No. 77. — Ujeniya Gohilasa Visasa-cha dānam.

" Gift of Gohila and of Viswa of Ujain."

No. 78. — Chirātiya bhichhuniyā dānam.

" Gift of Chirati, the mendicant nun."

Prinsepj No. 14, translates bhikshuni as " poor woman."

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 247

No. 79. — Sadhanasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Sadhana, the mendicant monk."

No. 80. — Aswa-Devaye Bahadata matu dānam.

" Gift of Aswa-Deva; the mother of Bahadatta."

Prinsep, No. 41, reads " Aswa Devi."

No. 81. — Utareyekasa Satigutasa dānam.

" Gift of Satya Gupta of Utareyaka.

Prinsep, No. 38, reads Ogireyakasa, the "Agar- nala" or "son of Agra ;" but his facsimile beg-ins with 'u', and not with 'o'.

No. 82. — Araha Gutaya dānam.

" Gift of the Arhata, Gupta," or
" Gift of Arhata Gupta."

Prinsep, No. 13, Arahagataya, of Arahagatā. I am not sure that the lady had attained the rank of arhat ; for it is quite possible that araha should form only part of her name, arhata Gupta, or cherished by the arhats;" for a Bhikshuni, even of eighty years of age, was inferior to an upasampada or newly ordained monk of twenty years.

No. 83. — Aswa Devaya Samikasa Mātu dānam.

" Gift of Aswa Deva, the mother of Samika."

(See No. 80, and No. 119).

No. 84. — Yasilaya Atevasini Sagha Rakhitaya dānam.

" Gift of Sangha Rakshita, the pupil of Yasilā."

No. 85. — Sethino-mātu Kaniya dānam.

"Gift of Kaniya, the mother of the Sreshti."

Prinsep, No. 17; reads mata and translates "the

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 248

Sethiii's deceased daughter ;" but the word dānam shows that the inscription records a " gift" and not an " obituary notice."

No. 86. — Yasilāya dānam.

" Gift of Yasila."

See No. 84 for this lady's name. She is there re- corded as the teacher of Sangha Rakshita. Prinsep, No. 27, reads Yasili.

No. 87. — Sethino-ghati-kamakārikānā dānam ; or,

Sethino-paṭi-kamakālikānā dānam,

of Prinsep, No 20, who translates, "Gift of the serving" women of the nobility." But the second word is ghati, a ghāt, or landing--place ; and as makarin, or makarika, means the ocean, I think that the translation should be —

"Gift of the Sreshti of the Sea-ghāt." that is, " of the harbour-master.

No. 88. — Vasulaye dānam.

" Gift of Vasula."

Prinsep, Nos. 24 and 25, reads Vasuliyey, but notices that the name, which occurs more than once, is also written Vasulaye, and states that these differences are caused by an attempt to render without compound letters the Sanskrit genitive Vasulyah.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 249

No. 89. — Dadatasa Pāwārikasa dānam,

"Gift of Dandata of Pāwārika."

The town of Pāwā was on the northern bank of the Ganges between Vaisali and Kusinagara.

No. 90. — Upedadatasa dānam.

" Gift of Upendradatta." (See Nos. 62; 03,


No. 91. — Semakaye Dhitaye dānam.

" Gift of Semakadhrita."

No. 92. — Vāghumanyo Saghadanāya bhichhuniye dānam.

" Gift of Sangha-dana, the mendicant Nun, of Vāghumanya" ?

No. 93. — Yakhiya bhichhuniye- Vedisa dānam.

" Gift of Yakshi, the mendicant nun of Vidisha."

Prinsep;, No. 40, translates " Gift of Yakhi, the priestess and traveller."

No. 94. — Kudurasa Sethi Bha(dasa) dānam.

" Gift of Bhadra, Sreshti of Kundura."

No. 95. — Kurarāye tapasiye matu dānam.

"Gift of Kurara, the ascetic's mother."

No. 96. — . . . pidataya Sadina pajava(ti)ya dānam.

" Gift of . . . pidattā, the sister-in-law of Sadi."

Prinsep, No. 45, reads hidataye sada dinadhe jivāya dānam, and translates, "A gift for those living here (for distribution of food) at midday for ever."

But the gift of a pillar or rail of the stone enclosure can have no connection with the provision of food.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 250

No. 97. — Chada Gutasa sa ... kagomiya . . . mita dānam.

" Gift of Chandra-Gupta . . ."

No. 98. — Dhara-kinā Sātilasa dānam.

"Gift of Santila of Dharaki (? Dharanagara)."

No. 99. — Kāpasigama Arahasa dānam.

" Gift of Kapasigrama, the arhat."

This may be read in another way as, Gift of the arhat of Kāpasigrāma (cotton-town) -" but the former seems the more simple reading, and is also in keeping with the other inscriptions, each of which records the gift of a particular individual. This inscription occurs twice.

No. 100. — Keṭakareyakasa Araha-dāsasa dānam.

" Gift of Arhata-Dasa, of Ketakareya,

No. 101. — Keṭakareya Bhadakasa dānam.

" Gift of Bhadraka of Ketakareya."

This inscription occurs three times.

No. 102. — Apathakasa dānam.

" Gift of Aprasthaka."

No. 103. — Bhoga-varhanakasa Ajiti-gutasa.

" (Gift) of Ajita-Gupta, the increaser of enjoyment,"

No. 104. — Rajāhikāṭā Arahadinasa dānam.

" Gift of Arahadina of Rajahikati."

No, 105. — Bhoga-varhana Dhama Rakhitaya Siva Nadino matu.

" Gift of Siva-Nandi's mother, Dharma Rakshita, the increaser of enjoyment."

This occurs twice. The use of the names of Siva

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 251

and Nandi at this early period is very remarkable. The Bhogavarhana of this inscription, as well as of No. 103, may perhaps be the name of a place.

No. 106. — Saghaya dānam.

" Gift of Sangha."

No. 107. — Navagāmakasa Mikaye Ujenihārā dānam.

"Gift of Mriksha, of Navagāmaka (New-town),in Ujain."

No. 108. — Sri Gutasa Vānijasa dānam.

" Gift of Sri-Gupta, of Vānija or
" Gift of Sri-Gupta, the grain merchant."

It is not impossible that Vānijā may mean only "nepheW; or "sister's son" the bhānjā of Urdu.

No. 109. — Subāhitasa-pajavatiyā Majhimayā dānam.

" Gift of Madhyama, the sister-in-law of Subahita."

No. 110, — Subāhitasa Gotiputasa, Rajalipākarasa dānam.

"Gift of Subāhita, son of Goti, the royal scribe."

This is the most valuable of all the inscriptions on the Sanchi colonnade ; as it belong-s to the family of Goti, whose eldest son Gotiputra was the teacher of the celebrated Mogaliputra. This inscription there- fore serves to fix the date of the Sanchi enclosure in the early part of Asoka's reig'n.

No. 111. — Taradapadānā Upāsikaya dānam.

" Gift of Tarandapadā, the devotee."

No. 112. — Burāya musanagothiyajana Vedisānyā. "Gift of Bura(?) . . . of Vidisha.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 252

No. 113. — Dhama Rakhitya bhichhuniye kāchupathasa dānam.

"Gift of Dharma Rakshita, the mendicant nun, of Kātyaprastha."

No. 114. — Dhama Rakhitasa Kāchhupathasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Rakshita, the mendicant monk, of Kātyaprastha."

No. 115. — Sandhānasa bhichhu dānam.

" Gift of Sandhana, the mendicant monk."

The possessive termination of bhichhu(no ) is omitted in the original.

No. 116. — Pusagirino Vagamakasa dānam,

" Gift of Pusagiri, of Vangamaka; or
" Gift of Vangamaka of Pusagiri."

South Gate. — Outside.

No. 117. — Bhichhakasa Padanayasa dānam.

" Gift of the mendicant Padanaya."

No. 118. — Vāghumato Kāchāno-pitano dānam.

" Gift of Vaqhuman, the father of Katya."

No. 119. — Sāmikasa- Vānikasa-

No. 120. — -putasa-cha-Siripalasa

No. 121. — dānam =

"Three (=) gifts of Samika, son of Vanika, and

of Sripala."

This inscription is carved on three railings of the colonnade, and, as the gift thus consisted of three rails, I presume that the three horizontal strokes which follow dānam are intended for that number. See Plate IX. of the Sanchi enclosure, where this

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 253

curious inscription is shown in the actual position which it occupies on the three rails. For Sāmika's mother see No. 83.

No. 122. — Bhādata Vājukasa dānam.

" Gift of Bhadrata Vanjuka."

No. 123. — Visākhasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Vaisakha, the mendicant monk."

Pl. XVIII. No. 124. — Sāmanerasa Abeyakasa Sethino dānam.

" Gift of the ascetic Abeyaka, the Sreshti."

See No. 23.

No. 125. — Nadi-Gutasa dānam bhichhuno.

"Gift of Nandi (or Nadi) Gupta, the mendicant monk."

Prinsep, No. 12, reads Nadigata, a "ferryman."

No. 126. — 'Podaka dānadata Dha(mika) dānam.

" The religious gift of Podraka Danadatta."

No. 127. — Arāpānāto arahadi (nasa mātu dānam).

" Gift of Aryapana (the mother of) Arhata-Dina."

See No. 148 for another inscription of the same lady.

No. 128. — Nyabalamidakajape-dānam.


No. 129. — Madhuvana Dhama Gutasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Gupta, the mendicant monk,of Madhuvana (perhaps Mahoba).

No. 130. — Nadasa Kurarajo.

" (Gift of Nanda, of Kurara . . ."

No. 131. — Mahagirino bhichhuno dānam.

"Gift of Mahagiri, the mendicant monk."

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No. 132. — Madhuvana Isidataya bkichuniye dānam.

" Gift of Isidatta, the mendicant nun of Madhuvana."

No. 133. — Isidataye bhikhiniye Kurariye dānam.

" Gift of Isidatta, the mendicant nun of Kurariya."

No. 134. — Dhama Pālasa . . . thukapadinasa dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Pala ..."

No. 135. — Upasijhasa Phagunasa bhatu bhichhuno.

"(Gift) of Upasidya, the brother of Phalguna, the mendicant monk."

No. 136. — Bhoga-varhanato Isi Rakhitaya.

" (Gift) of Isi Rakshita, the increaser of enjoyment."

No. 137. — Bhoga varhana Dunyonāne.

" (Gift) of Dunyonā; the increaser of enjoyment."

No. 138. — Kurariyasa Vimalasa dānam.

" Gift of Vimala of Kurariya."

No. 139. — Sāmidatasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Swmidatta, the mendicant monk."

No. 140. — Devagirino Padenekayikasa.

" (Gift) of Devagiri, of Pandenekayika." (?)

No. 141. — Bhichhunosa Atevasa . . .

" Gift of the mendicant's pupil . . ."

No. 142. — Pasakasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Parswaka, the mendicant monk."

No. 143. — Chudasa-cha Dhama Rakhitasa bhichhuno dānam.

"Gift of Kshudra and of Dharma Rakshita, the mendicant monks."

No. 144. — Ujeniye Agisamaye dānam.

" Gift of Agnisharma; of Ujjain."

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No. 145, — Patithānasa bhichhuno-dānam Aya ... i ... na Atevdsino.

" Gift of Pratisthana, the mendicant monk, pupil of Arya . . ."

No. 146. — Budha Rakhitasa bhichhuno dānam Esavatasa.

" Gift of Budha Rakshita, the mendicant monk . . ."

No. 147. — Nadinagarikaya Isidināye bhichuniye.

" Gift of Isidina, the mendicant nun of Nadinagarika."

No. 148. — Arāpānā Asadasamatu dānam.

" Gift of Aryāpānā, the mother of Asada."

See No. 127 for another inscription of the same name.

No. 149. — Ujeniye-tāpasiyana Nasaya Mitaya.

" (Gift) of Nasa-Mitra, the (female) ascetic."

No. 150. — Bharaḍiyasa Sapurisasa Yugapajakasa dānam.

" Gift of Baradiya (son) of the emancipated

Yugaprajnaka." (Luminary of the age.)

The term sapurisa is the Pali form of the Sanskrit sapurusha, which is a compound of sa, with, and purusha, the divinity, or of the pronoun sa, which, when joined with purusha, means, "the man" or " that man" or simply " the mortal." The term is found on nearly all the relic-caskets, and must there- fore apply to the dead. Accordingly I have every where rendered it by " emancipated;" that is, from future transmigrations. This gives the meaning attached to the term by the Buddhists ; but perhaps a more literal translation would be "absorbed" that is,

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 256

into the divine essence. Each word gives the meaning- in part only ; for the term sapurusha implies one who has attained Buddhahood by "absorption " into the divine essence, and who is therefore " emancipated" from future transmigration. Perhaps the best rendering- would be "the Buddha" that is, one who has attained Buddhahood : but as the sole aim of the Buddhist was to obtain moksha, that is, " liberation, or emancipation" from transmigration, I have preferred the well-known term " emancipated."

No. 151. — Ayadhanakasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Aryadhanaka, the mendicant monk."

No. 152. — Jonhakasa bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Jonhaka, the mendicant monk."

No. 153. — Jenakasa-bhichhuno dānam.

" Gift of Jenaka, the mendicant monk."

No. 154. — Dhama Rakhitāya Madhuvanikaye dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Rakshita, of Madhuvanika."

No. 155. — Mahamarati musipagarano-dānam.

This inscription appears to be the same as No. 28 ; but I am unable to offer any translation.

No. 156. — Yaso-Pālasa dānam bhasikada.

" Gift of Yaso-Pala."

No. 157. — Dhanagirino dānam.

"Gift of Dhanagiri."

No. 158. — Pusasa-cha Hathiyasa bhichhuno dānam.

"Gift of Pusa and of Hatiya, the mendicant monks."

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From South Gate to West Gate.

No. 159. — Baiikāya bhichhuniya madalā chhakatikaye dānam.

" Gift of Balika; the mendicant nun of the temple of Chhakrātika."

No. 160. — Dhamasthiriyā bhichhuniye madalā chhakatikaye dānam.

" Gift of Dharma Sthiri, the mendicant nun of the temple of Chhakrātika."

No. 161. — Avisinaye Sutatikiniyā madala Chhikatikaye dānam.

" Gift of Sutrantikirni, the novice of the temple of Chhakrātika."

The term Avisina occurs in No. 190 as Avesani, which means an '"entrance," from vis "to enter." Avesana and Avesanā may therefore be the titles of those who had entered into the religious life, but had not yet taken the vows. I have consequently, but not without hesitation, rendered the terms by "neo-phyte" and " novice." This inscription occurs twice. It may also be rendered " Gift of Avisina, the Sutrāntiki (or reader of the Sutras), in the temple of Chhrakrātika."

No. 162. — Sagha Devasa Verohakatasa Vānidāsa dānam.

" Gift of Vani DasA; the . . . of Sangha Deva."

No. 163.— Bhadikiyasa Sanghilasa dānam.

" Gift of Bhadikriya, of Sanghila ;" or perhaps,
"Gift of Sanghila, of Bhadikriya."

No. 164. — Arahata Palitasa . .

" Gift of the Arhata Palita . . ."

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No. 165. — Arahakasa Paripanakasa dānam.

" Gift of the Arhata Paripanaka."

No. 166. — Dhamagirika mātu dānam.

" Gift of Dharmagiri's mother."

From West to North. — Outside.

No. 167. — Udiya Nadinagariya dānam.

" Gift of Udi, of Nadinagari."

This occurs twice on portions of the fallen colonnade to N. W.

No. 168. — Sadhathasa Va ...

" Gift of Sadhantha . . ."

No. 169. — Isi Dasiyena dānam : Garākaye bhichhuniye dānam.

" Gift of Garākā, the mendicant nun, offered by Isi Dasi."

No. 170. — Nadinagara Dupasaha bhichhuniye dānam.

" Gift of Drupasaha, the mendicant nun of Nadinagara."

No. 171. — Yakhadasiya dā(nam).

" Gift of Yaksha-dasi."

No. 172. — Datakulavaḍasa dānam.

" Gift of Datta-Kulavaḍa."

On Small Pillars Fallen from Upper Enclosure.

No. 173. — Damakasa sotikasukasukapasa. " Gift of Damaka . . ."

No. 174. — Dhama-datasa dānam.

" Gift of Dharma-datta."

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Plate, No. 175. — Arahadāsiya-bhichhuniyee dānam.

" Gift of Arhata-Dasi, the mendicant nun."

No. 176. — Sāmidarāya dānam.

" Gift of SWAMIDARA.".

Inscription on South Pillar.

Pl. XIX., No. 177.

This inscription is carved upon a fragment of a broken isolated pillar near the south gateway. As it was a practice amongst the early Buddhists, before building a Tope, to erect a pillar on the spot, with an inscription recording- their intentions, it seems possible that this broken column might bear a memorial inscription relating either to the erection of the Great Sanchi Tope, or to some additions or repairs. The latter is the more probable, as the pillar in the former case was generally if not always removed.

But the inscription is unfortunately so much obliterated that it baffled even the heaven-born sagacity of James Prinsep. Some few words he read ; but apparently with hesitation, as he says,† :"This inscription is in too mutilated a state to be restored entirely, but from the commencement of the third line, bhakhatibhikhunābhi khamavase dātā, it may be concluded that some provision was made by, a charitable and religiously-disposed person for hungry priests,' and this is confirmed by the two nearly perfect lines at the foot, —

Journal, vii. p. 565.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 260

" Sasijalā petaviye ichhāhime(idi)si : sampesimate chilathitika


" 'It is also my desire that camphorated (cool ?) water should be given to drink; may this excellent purpose endure for ever.' "

I examined the inscription in several positions and in all lights : I took impressions on paper and made a copy by hand ; but the surface of the stone has been so much injured that very few of the letters are readable excepting, in the last two lines. There is, however, a sufficient blank surface on all four sides to make it certain that we have the whole of the inscription. It is therefore very much to be regretted that the general indistinctness of the letters should have rendered this inscription almost illegible. The opening is nearly obliterated; but, on a comparison of James Prinsep's copy with my own, I think it probable that the first word was Devanam ; next comes a blank ; and then Maga, or perhaps Magadha; and it is possible that the whole line might be read —

Devanam(piya) Magadhe raja.

" Devanampriya, King of Magadha."

The second line may be partially restored, thus :—

. (a)bhi(vademā)nam Chetiyagiri. .

" with salutation to the fraternity of Chaityagiri."

At the end of the third line, the word Sangham "community" is distinctly legible; and I think that I can trace the name of Dhamagiri. The

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fourth line seems to have been correctly given by Prinsep : —


" a gift of food to the much-emaciated Bhikshus."

I can make nothing of the fifth line and of one- half of the sixth, but the concluding- portion of the inscription, which is nearly perfect, reads —

.......Ichhahime Sān-
-ti-Sangham samaye milathitike siyāti.
" Is it my wish that the Santi community may always be


The whole inscription, in Roman characters, may with some conjectural restorations, be read as follows : —

1. Devānam(piya) Magadhe (raja).

2. . . (a)bhi(vādemā)nam Chetiyagiri.

3. . tikhi-cha(Dha)magiri . ikeye sangham.

4. bhokhati-bhikhunābhikhāmavisedāto.

5. nidu . ti sanani . . chhava annā

6. Sasivi(ye) petaviye. Ichhahime Sān-

7. -ti Sangham samage milathitike siyāti.

The drift of this inscription, at least as I under- stand it, seems to be the following- :—

" Devanampriya, king- of Magadha, offers his salutation to the community of Chaityagiri (and perhaps to that of Dharmagiri also) . . . with a gift of food for the Bhikshus, much emaciated (with their austerities ?) . . . and prays that the Santi community may always be united."

-* By reading क्षाम, kshāma, " debilitated " for the Pali khama.

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In my account of the great Sanchi Tope I have already identified the present name of Sanchi with the Sanskrit Sānti, which I presume was the name of the great Vihar on the Chetiyagiri, or "Hill of Chaityas" If my reading of Dhamagiri be correct, we may identify the " hill of religion" in the long spur which stretches northward as far as Kānākhera. This hill is still covered with ruins, which no doubt once formed a part of the vast religious establishment of Sanchi-kānākhera.

Later Inscriptions from the Gateways

On the North Gateway.

PI. XIX., No. 178. — Dhamagirino bhikhuno dānam.

" Gift of Dharmagiri, the mendicant monk."

No. 179. — Isi-Pālitasa-cha Samanasa-cha dānam.

" Gift both of Isi-Palita and of Sramana."

Prinsep, No. 10, reads the same.

On the East Gateway.

No. 180. — Arahadinasa bhikhuno Pokhareyakasa dānam.

" Gift of Arhatadina, the mendicant monk of Pokhareyaka."

Prinsep, No. 20, reads Pakhareyakasa doubtfully as the name of the donor, and takes no notice of Arahadina.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 263

No. 181. — Bhadata Nāgilasa Savamamjnātinam dānam thabho.

" Pillar-gift of Bhadrata Nagila, the learned in all things." (?) (jnāti = Jat ?)

Prinsep, No. 47, reads Danda-nagilalasa pavina- nātinam dānathambho ; and translates, " This pillar is the gift of the illustrious family of Danda Nagi- rala." But the facsimile impression of this inscription, as well as a hand-copy now before me, agree in the reading- which I have given above.

No. 182. — Kirārasa Nāgapiyasa Achhavade Sethisa dānam thabho.

"Pillar-gift of Nagapriya, Achhavada, the Sreshti (or master) of the weavers."

Prinsep, No. 3, reads Karasa and translates " Gift of Achhavada Sethi, the beloved of Karasa Naga." See also No. 193 of the western gate. Prinsep evidently considered Sethi as the feminine form of Seth, a banker." I have ventured to identify the Kirar of this inscription with the weaver caste, who bear the same name at the present day, but this is a mere conjecture.

No. 183. This inscription is too indistinct to allow even of a conjectural translation.

On the South Gateway.

No. 184. — Budha Palitaya bhikhunaye dānam.

" Gift of Budha Palita, the mendicant nun."

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Prinsep, No. 23, reads Budha Palitasa bhikhmo dānam., " the gift of Budiia Palit, the poor man."

No. 185. — Pothakasa bhikuno dānam.

" Gift of Posthaka, the mendicant monk."

Prinsep, No. 23, reads Panthaka.

No. 186. — Virasa bhikhuno dānam.

" Gift of Vira, the mendicant monk."

No. 187. — Yakhaye bhikhuniyā vādiva.

" Gift of Yaksha, the mendicant nun . ."

No. 188. — Hanajaya dānam.

" Gift of Hanaja."

No. 189. — Vedisa Kehidāntakarehirāpakam mankata.

This inscription is quite perfect : but as it seems to have formed only a part of a longer inscription, I cannot even make a guess as to its meaning. The donor was an inhabitant of Vidisha, and was perhaps named Kehidānta.

No. 190. — Rajnye Siri Sātakanisa

Avesanisa Vāsithi-putasa

Anandasa dānam.

"Gift of Ananda, son of the neophyte Vasishtha, in the reign of Ski Satakarni."

This valuable inscription is carved on the bas-relief of a Tope, in the middle of the upper architrave of the south gateway. The King, Sri Satakarni, was the third† of the Andhra dynasty of Magadha ; and

† Wilson's Vishnu Purana, p. 472.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 265

his reign extended from the year 19 to 37 A.D. The word, which I have translated neophhte, occurs also in No.161, but in this instance it is possible that it may have another signification. A'vesan means simply "entrance" from vis to enter ; but as there is a separate inscription on the middle architrave (see No. 191); and another on one of the pillars of the gateway (see No. 189), it is clear that the whole entrance could not have been the gift of Ananda. A'vesani must therefore have some other meaning which is not given in the dictionaries. Now as ishā a ploughbeam, is derived from ईष, isha, to go, ishani may be taken for a beam of any kind and thus we shall have ava + ishani = aveshani, or (as there is but one s in Pali) avesani, an entrance- beam, or gateway architrave. As ava means to " enter" this derivation is quite legitimate. But if this was the real meaning, it seems difficult to say why the term should have been separated from dānam ; for in the pillar gifts the word thabho invariably precedes or follows dānam.

After a careful examination of all the inscriptions on the gateways of the Sanchi Tope, and a comparison of their alphabetical characters -with those of other inscriptions of known dates, such as those of Asoka, B.C. 250, those of the Sah coins of Gujrat, A. D. 300 and those of the Guptas, A. D. 400 to 500 ; both Lieutenant Maisey and myself had Concluded that the Sanchi gateways were erected about the

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 266

beginning of the Christian era. It was with great satisfaction therefore that I afterwards discovered the name of Sri Satakarni in a conspicuous situation over the southern gateway. This successful result of my long experience in Indian archceology has given me sufficient confidence to say that the age of any Indian inscription may be determined approximately by the forms of its alphabetical characters.

No. 191. —

Ayachudasa Dhamakathikasa

Atevāsino Bala Mitasa dānani.

" Gift of Bala-Mitra, pupil of Arya Kshudra, the reciter of Dharma."

This inscription is taken from the bas-relief of a Tope on the middle architrave of the south gateway. Prinsep, No. 23, reads the "well-tonsured pupil" but Antevāsina, अन्तवासिन, means simply a "pupil" being derived from अन्त; anta near, and वस vasa, to "abide" — that is one who lives near another; as a pupil near a master. Aya-chuda is the teacher's name : see inscription No. 193. Prinsep reads kathaka at the end of the first line ; but my facsimile impression gives kathikasa, the possessive case of कथिक; kathika, a "narrator, or story-teller" as Prinsep has translated it.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 267

On the West Gate.

No. 192. — Kirāraya Nāgapiyasa Achhavada Scthi-putasa cha Sanghasa.

" Gift of the son of Nagapriya Achhavada, the master of the weavers, and of Sangha."

See No. 182 for the term which I have translated weavers." I rather suspect that it must be the name of a place, Kirāra.

No. 193. — Aya-chudasa Atevāsino Bala Mitasa dānam thahho.

" Pillar-gift of Bala-Mitra, the pupil of Arya-Kshudra."

Prinsep, No. 22. In this inscription there seems to me to be no doubt that Aya-chuda or Aryya-kshudra is the teacher's name.

Nos. 194, 195, 196. These show that the inscriptions were carried on from one line to another. The word dānam, "gift," is carved at the end of the upper band of the column, and thabho", "pillar" begins the second line, which is carved on a central band. Here the sense is complete ', and the swastika, ft , separates this inscription from the following- one : which, although it looks legible enough, has quite baffled all my attempts to read it.

The Bhilsa topes: Inscriptions, Page 268

It is worthy of remark that upwards of one-third of the gifts recorded in these inscriptions were made by the fair sex; who in all countries have been noted for their pious donations. The number is very remarkable, when we remember that in India women could not possess property ; but were entirely dependent on their fathers, their husbands, their brothers, or their sons.

Another point which I have noticed is the extremely rare use of compound letters. Only three instances occur throughout all these inscriptions ; and they are certainly exceptions to the common practice of Asoka's age, which adhered to the simplest Pali forms. The compound sw occurs twice in aswa (see Nos. 80 and 83), but the true Pali form of Asa occurs in the ink inscription found inside the lid of the steatite casket from No. 3 Tope at Andher, see Plate XXX. The compound sth is found only once in Dhama sthiri (see No. 160) ', but the regular Pali form of th occurs twice in patithiya for pratisthiya (see Nos. 40 and 41), and once in mila thiti for milasthiti in the inscription on the southern pillar. The compound nh occurs once in the name of Jonhaka, see No. 102.

Sanchi Inscription of Chandragupta II G.E 93 (A.D. 412)

  • Perfection has been attained! To the community of the faithful in the holy great vihâra of Kâkanâdabôta, -in which the organs of sense (of the members of it) have been subdued by the virtues of (good) character, religious meditation, and wisdom; which . . . . . . . . . . . . deeds of the very highest religious merit; which has come together from the four quarters of the world; (and) which is the abode of most excellent Shramanas,-having prostrated himself in an assembly of five persons, Amrakârdava the son of Undâna,-whose means of subsistence have been made comfortable by the favour of the feet of the Mahârâjâdhirâja, the glorious Chandragupta II); who is publishing in the world the amiable behaviour of the virtuous people who are the dependents (of the king); who has acquired banners of victory and fame in many battles; (and) who is an inhabitant of (the town of) Nashtî . . . . . . in the Sukuli dêsha,-gives (the village or allotment of) Îshvaravâsaka ……..purchased with the endowment of Maja and Sharabhanga and Amrarâta of the royal household, and (also gives) twenty-five dînâras.
  • (Line 7.)-From [the interest of the dînâras] given by him,- with half, as long as the moon and the sun (endure), let five Bhikshus be fed, and let a lamp burn in the jewel-house, for the perfection of all the virtues of….the familiar name of Dêvarâja, ……. Of the Mahârâjâdhirâja, the glorious Chandragupta (II.); and with the other half, which is mine, let the same number of five Bhikshus be fed, and (let) a lamp (burn) in the jewel-house.
  • (L. 10.)-Whosoever shall interfere with this his arrangement,- he shall become invested with (the guilt of) the slaughter of a cow or of a Brâhman, and with (the guilt of) the five sins that entail immediate retribution!
  • (L. 11.)-The year 90 (and) 3; (the month) Bhâdrapada; the day 4.
  • From: Fleet, John F. Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum: Inscriptions of the Early Guptas. Vol. III. Calcutta: Government of India, Central Publications Branch, 1888, 32-34.

Sanchi Stone Inscription of Kumaragupta I (450-451 CE)

  • Perfection has been attained! By the Upâsikâ Harisvâminî, the wife of the Upâsaka Sanasiddha, for the sake of (her) parents, twelve dînâras are given, (as) a permanent endowment, to the community of the faithful, collected from the four quarters of the world, at the holy great vihâra of Kâkanâdabôta. With the interest that accrues of these dinâras, day by day one Bhikshu, who has been introduced into the community, should be fed.
  • (Line 5.)-Also three dinâras are given in the jewel-house. With the interest of these three dinâras, day by day three lamps of the divine Buddha should be lit in the jewel house.
  • (L.6.)-Also, one dinâra is given in the place where (the images of) the four Buddhas are seated. With the interest of this, day by day a lamp of the divine Buddha should be lit in the place where (the images of) the four Buddhas are seated.
  • (L. 8.)-Thus this permanent endowment,-written upon stone (so as to endure) for the same time with the moon and the sun,-has been accomplished by the Upâsikâ Harisvâminî, the noble lady, the wife of Sanasiddha.
  • (L. 11.)-The years 100 (and) 30 (and) 1; (the month) Ashvayuj; the day 5.
  • From: Fleet, John F. Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum: Inscriptions of the Early Guptas. Vol. III. Calcutta: Government of India, Central Publications Branch, 1888, 262.

Kakanadabota History

Tejram Sharma [1] writes that ....The word Kakanadabota (काकनादबोट) has been mentioned in two Gupta inscriptions - (No. 5, L. 1): Sanchi Stone Inscription of Chandragupta II Gupta Year 93 (A.D. 412); (No.23, L.2) : Sanchi Stone Inscription of the time of Kumaragupta I Gupta Year 131 (=A.D. 450)

2. Kakanadabota (काकनादबोट) (No. 5, L. 1; No.23, L.2) : In both the inscriptions, we find reference to a grant to the Arya Samgha or the Community of the faithful, at the great Vihara, or Buddhist convent of Kakanadabota, 700 for the purpose of feeding mendicants and maintaining lamps.

D.C. Sircar takes 'Kakanadabota' to be the old name of Sanchi. 701 Fleet is of the view that the Kakanadabota convent is the Great Stupa itself. According to him the word Bota is another form of Pota (पोट) which means 'the foundation of a house'. 702 Fleet further writes that the name 'Kakanada' lit. 'the noise of the crow' was the ancient name of Sanchi it self which is proved by its occurrence in two inscriptions in Mauryan characters found at Sanchi. 703

Thus, it is clear that Kakanada was the ancient name of Sanci in the Bhopal State, now Raisen district, Madhya Pradesh, well-known for its Buddhist topes. 704 The word 'bota' is thus a surplus and joined by 'Kakanada' will refer to the great stupa itself. Its form Pota meaning the foundation of a house is untenable bacause the word 'vihara' in that very sense appears in the inscriptions. The word 'bota' has been used here in the sense of an ascetic cult. 705 It is a Prakrit word which has been used here to refer to 'the Buddhist cult'. Thus the relevant expression means 'in the holy great vihara of the Buddhist cult (assembly) at Kakanada'.

Fleet is wrong in translating the word Kakanada to mean 'the noise of the crow'. 706 K.P. Jayaswal's rendering 'the praise of the Kakas' 707 is more to the point. We know of the Kakas, an autonomous community mentioned in the Allahabad Inscription of Samudragupta. 708 In Eastern Malwa we have two ancient place-names connected with the Kakas. One is the hill now called Sanchi hill (the ancient) Kakanada. The other is an ancient village called Kakapura, some 20 miles north of Bhilsa, and full of ancient monuments. 709

700. No. 5, L. 1 : No. 2, L. 2 : काकनादबोट-श्री-महाविहारे...।

701. Select Inscriptions by D. C. Sircar, p. 281, f.n.3.

702. Corpus Inscripionum Indicarum, Vol. III by John Faithful Fleet, p. 31 also see f.n.I.

703. Ibid., p. 31 : (i) काकणाये भगवतो पमण लठि "the measuring staff of (Buddha), the Divine one, at Kakanada". (ii) "सपुरिसस गोतिपुतस काकनाद - पभासनस कोडिन गोतस " : "(the relics) of the virtuous Prabhasana of Kakanada, the Gotiputra, of the Kaundinya gotra".

704. Cf. Geographical Dictionary of Ancient and Medieval India by N. L. Dey, p. 83 : Select Inscriptions by D. C. Sircar. p. 280.

705. Cf. Paia-Sadda-Mahannavo (ed.) V. S. Agrawala and Malvania. p. 639 : बोटिय (बोटिक) : दिगम्बर जैन सम्प्रदाय, वि. दिगम्बर जैन सम्प्रदाय का अनुयायी .... "बिडियसिव भूईयो बोडियलिंगस्स होइ उप्पत्ती ...

706. Corpus Inscripionum Indicarum, Vol. III by John Faithful Fleet. p. 31

707. Journal of Bihar and Orissa Research Society, Patna. Vol. XVIII, 1952, Pt. II, p. 212.

708. No. I, L. 22 : Corpus Inscripionum Indicarum, Vol. III by John Faithful Fleet , pp. 8,14.

709. Jayaswal, 'The Kakas... their location" Journal of Bihar and Orissa Research Society, Patna, Vol. XV1IT, 1932, Pt. II, pp. 212-13. P. 212 'Kakapura is situated on a river and a hill opposite the village by the road has two square temples and a few Gupta Sculptures. A large number of pillars and Sati memorials cover the plain in front of the temple hill. Medieval inscriptions are also in evidence. They with the temples testify to the continued importance of the place, from the Gupta to the medieval period.

The Jat clans in Sanchi inscriptions

The inscriptions at Buddhist Stupa at Sanchi record the names of the donors. Some of them also give the calling or occupation of the donors, and several add the name of their native city, or place of residence. We have provided links to the names which appear in inscriptions. We find that some of the links connect to the Jat clans without any spelling variations in these records. In others there is a slight variation with spellings of Jat clans. The spelling variations in inscriptions are recorded here in brackets of probable Jat clan. We find a large number of Nagavanshi Jat clans recorded in the inscriptions. There is a need to further research and establish proper historical relations. The probable list scanned from Sanchi inscriptions is as under:

Achala, Agi, Andhra, Arh (Araha), Asi (Isi), Atevasini, Bal, Bal, Bana (Bāna), Baradiya, Bhatu, Bodhi (Bodhe), Bura, Burdak (Bhadukasa), Dhama, Dhama, Dhaman, Dhami, Dhana, Dhanake (Dhanaka), Ghosalya (Ghosa), Gohil, Goth (Gothiye), Jnāti, Jauna (Jonhaka, Jenaka), Kachha (Kāchāno), Kachha (Kāchhupatha), Kadiyan (Kāda), Kadiyan (Kadiye), Kak (Kākanā), Kamboja, Kandari, Kaniya, Kulhari (Kulavaḍa), Kundu (Kundura), Kurariya, Kurara, Legha, Madhu (Madhava), Maya, Mitya (Mitaya), Nara, Naga, Naga, Nagil, Nehra (Naraya), Ogra (Ogireyaka), Pandya (Pāndaya), Pawar (Pāwārika), Phageria (Phaguyava), Podan (Podaka), Rohlan (Rohuniya), Saharan (Sārhineyaka), Sangha, Satalya (Satila), Sihak (Siha), Sanghila, Sirohi, Vaja, Vaniwar (Vānija), Varaha (Varha),

Jat Gotras in Sanchi

Notable Jats in Sanchi

  • Gopal Singh Kurwar - Sanchi, Mob:97545071074, 9713209923[2]


Please identify the following names/Gotras/place names marked ?

  • Abeyaka = ?
  • Aprasthaka = "
  • Bhadraka = ?
  • Chhakrātika = ?
  • Devagiri = ?
  • Dhamagiri = ?
  • Dharmagiri = ?
  • Dharmagiri = ?
  • Goti = ?
  • Gotiputa = ?
  • Gutasa = ?
  • Gutaya = ?
  • Kānākhera = ?
  • Kapasigrama = ?
  • Karmaka = ?
  • Keṭakareyaka = ?
  • Kandarigāmiya = ?
  • Koraghara = ?
  • Kuraghara = ?
  • Mahagiri = ?
  • Mulagiri = ?
  • Nadinagari = ?
  • Narmamakādi = ?
  • Navāgāmikā = ?
  • Padanaya = ?
  • Padona = "
  • Pandenekayika = ?
  • Paripanaka = ?
  • Pusagiri = ?
  • Rajahikati = ?
  • Samanera = ?
  • Sandhana = ?
  • Sarpagiri = ?
  • sotikasukasukapasa = ?
  • Tubavani
  • Udubaraghariya = ?
  • Vāghumanya = ?
  • Vahila = ?
  • Vangamaka = ?
  • Vejajjagrama = ?
  • Bhadraka = ?
  • Tubavani
  • Abeyaka = ?
  • Chhakrātika = ?
  • Devagiri = ?
  • Dhamagiri = ?
  • Dharmagiri = ?
  • Dharmagiri = ?
  • Goti = ?
  • Gotiputa = ?
  • Gutasa = ?
  • Kānākhera = ?
  • Kapasigrama = ?
  • Karmaka = ?
  • Keṭakareyaka = ?
  • Kuraghara = ?
  • Mahagiri = ?
  • Mulagiri = ?
  • Nadinagari = ?
  • Narmamakādi = ?
  • Navāgāmikā = ?
  • Padanaya = ?
  • Padona = "
  • Pandenekayika = ?
  • Paripanaka = ?
  • Pusagiri =
  • Samanera = ?
  • Sandhana = ?
  • Sarpagiri = ?
  • sotikasukasukapasa = ?
  • Udubaraghariya = ?
  • Vangamaka = ?
  • Vejajjagrama = ?


सांची (AS, p.949): विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर [3] ने लेख किया है ...यह प्रसिद्ध स्थान, जहां अशोक द्वारा निर्मित एक महान् स्तूप, जिनके भव्य तोरणद्वार तथा उन पर की गई जगत प्रसिद्ध मूर्तिकारी भारत की प्राचीन वास्तुकला तथा मूर्तिकला के सर्वोत्तम उदाहरणों में हैं। बौद्ध की प्रसिद्ध ऐश्वर्यशालिनी नगरी विदिशा (भीलसा) के निकट स्थित है। जान पड़ता है कि बौद्धकाल में साँची, महानगरी विदिशा की उपनगरी तथा विहार-स्थली थी। सर जोन मार्शल के मत में (ए गाइड टु साँची) कालिदास ने नीचगिरि नाम से जिस स्थान का वर्णन मेघदूत में विदिशा के निकट किया है, वह साँची की पहाड़ी ही है।

सांची के स्तूप: कहा जाता है कि अशोक ने अपनी प्रिय पत्नी देवी के कहने पर ही साँची में यह सुंदर स्तूप बनवाया था। देवी, विदिशा के एक श्रेष्ठी की पुत्री थी और अशोक ने उस समय उससे विवाह किया था जब वह अपने पिता के राज्यकाल में विदिशा का कुमारामात्य था।

यह स्तूप एक ऊंची पहाड़ी पर निर्मित है। इसके चारों ओर सुंदर परिक्रमापथ है। बालु-प्रस्तर के बने चार तोरण स्तूप के चतुर्दिक् स्थित हैं जिन के लंबे-लंबे पट्टकों पर बुद्ध के जीवन से संबंधित, विशेषत: जातकों में वर्णित कथाओं का मूर्तिकारी के रूप में अद्भुत अंकन किया गया है। इस मूर्तिकारी में प्राचीन भारतीय जीवन के सभी रूपों का दिग्दर्शन किया गया है। मनुष्यों के अतिरिक्त पशु-पक्षी तथा पेड़-पौधों के जीवंत चित्र इस कला की मुख्य विशेषता हैं। सरलता, सामान्य, और सौंदर्य की उद्भभावना ही साँची की मूर्तिकला की प्रेरणात्मक शक्ति है।

इस मूर्तिकारी में गौतम बुद्ध की मूर्ति नहीं पाई जाती क्योंकि उस समय तक (शुंग काल, द्वितीय शती ई.पू.) बुद्ध को देवता के रूप में मूर्ति बनाकर नहीं पूजा जाता था। कनिष्क के काल में महायान धर्म के उदय होने के साथ ही बौद्ध धर्म में गौतम बुद्ध की मूर्ति का प्रवेश हुआ। साँची में बुद्ध की उपस्थिति का आभास उनके कुछ विशिष्ट प्रतीकों द्वारा किया गया है, जैसे उनके गृहपरित्याग का चित्रण अश्वारोही से रहित, केवल दौड़ते हुए घोड़े के द्वारा, जिस पर एक छत्र स्थापित है, किया गया है। इसी प्रकार बुद्ध की बोधि का आभास पीपल के वृक्ष के नीचे ख़ाली वज्रासन द्वारा दिया गया है। पशु-पक्षियों के चित्रण में साँची का एक मूर्तिचित्र अतीव मनोहर है। इसमें जानवरों के एक चिकित्सालय का चित्रण है जहां एक तोते की विकृत आँख का एक वानर मनोरंजक ढंग से परीक्षण कर रहा है। तपस्वी बुद्ध को एक वानर द्वारा दिए गए पायस का चित्रण भी अद्भुत रूप से किया गया है। [p.950]:एक कटोरे में खीर लिए हुए एक वानर का अश्वत्थ वृक्ष के नीचे वज्रासन के निकट धीरे-धीरे आने तथा ख़ाली कटोरा लेकर लौट जाने का अंकन है जिसमें वास्तविकता का भाव दिखाने के लिए उसी वानर की लगातार कई प्रतिमाएं चित्रित हैं। साँची की मूर्तिकला दक्षिण भारत की अमरावती की मूर्तिकला की भांति ही पूर्व बौद्ध कालीन भारत के सामान्य तथा सरल जीवन की मनोहर झांकी प्रस्तुत करती है।

साँची के इस स्तूप में से उत्खनन द्वारा सारिपुत्र तथा मोग्गलायन नामक भिक्षुओं के अस्थि अवशेष प्राप्त हुए थे जो अब स्थानीय संग्रहालय में सुरक्षित हैं। साँची में अशोक के समय का एक दूसरा छोटा स्तूप भी है। इसमें तोरण-द्वार नहीं है। अशोक का एक प्रस्तर-स्तंभ जिस पर मौर्य सम्राट् का शिलालेख उत्कीर्ण है यहाँ के महत्त्वपूर्ण स्मारकों में से है। यह स्तंभ भग्नावस्था में प्राप्त हुआ था।

अभिलेख: साँची से मिलने वाले कई अभिलेखों में इस स्थान को काकनादबोट नाम से अभिहित किया गया है। इनमें से प्रमुख 131 गुप्त संवत (450-51) ई. का है जो कुमारगुप्त प्रथम के शासनकाल से संबंधित है। इसमें बौद्ध उपासक सनसिद्ध की पत्नी उपासिका हरिस्वामिनी द्वारा काकनादबोट में स्थित आर्यसंघ के नाम कुछ धन के दान में दिए जाने का उल्लेख है। एक अन्य लेख एक स्तंभ पर उत्कीर्ण है जिसका संबंध गोसुरसिंहबल के पुत्र विहारस्वामिन से है। यह भी गुप्तकालीन है।

साँची परिचय

साँची भारत के मध्य प्रदेश राज्य के रायसेन ज़िले में स्थित एक छोटा सा गांव है। यह भोपाल से 46 किमी पूर्वोत्तर में तथा बेसनगर और विदिशा से 10 किमी की दूरी पर मध्य-प्रदेश के मध्य भाग में है। यहाँ बौद्ध स्मारक हैं, जो कि तीसरी शताब्दी ई.पू. से बारहवीं शताब्दी के बीच के हैं। यह रायसेन ज़िले की एक नगर पंचायत है। यहीं यह स्तूप स्थित है। इस स्तूप को घेरे हुए कई तोरण भी हैं। यह प्रेम, शांति, विश्वास और साहस का प्रतीक है। साँची का स्तूप, सम्राट अशोक महान् ने तीसरी शती, ई.पू. में बनवाया था। इसका केन्द्र, एक सामान्य अर्द्धगोलाकार, ईंट निर्मित ढांचा था, जो कि बुद्ध के कुछ अवशेषों पर बना था। इसके शिखर पर एक छत्र था, जो कि स्मारक को दिये गये सम्मान का प्रतीक था।

स्थापना: सांची की स्थापना बौद्ध धर्म व उसकी शिक्षा के प्रचार-प्रसार में मौर्य काल के महान् राजा अशोक का सबसे बडा योगदान रहा। बुद्ध का संदेश दुनिया तक पहुंचाने के लिए उन्होंने एक सुनियोजित योजना के तहत कार्य आरंभ किया। सर्वप्रथम उन्होंने बौद्ध धर्म को राजकीय प्रश्रय दिया। उन्होंने पुराने स्तूपों को खुदवा कर उनसे मिले अवशेषों के 84 हज़ार भाग कर अपने राज्य सहित निकटवर्ती देशों में भेजकर बडी संख्या में स्तूपों का निर्माण करवाया। इन स्तूपों को स्थायी संरचनाओं में बदला ताकि ये लंबे समय तक बने रह सकें। सम्राट अशोक ने भारत में जिन स्थानों पर बौद्ध स्मारकों का निर्माण कराया उनमें सांची भी एक था जिसे प्राचीन नाम कंकेनवा, ककान्या आदि से जाना जाता है। तब यह बौद्ध शिक्षा के प्रमुख केंद्र के रूप में विकसित हो चुका था। ह्वेन सांग के यात्रा वृत्तांत में बुद्ध के बोध गया से सांची जाने का उल्लेख नहीं मिलता है। संभव है सांची की उज्जयिनी से निकटता और पूर्व से पश्चिम व उत्तर से दक्षिण जाने वाले यात्रा मार्ग पर होना भी इसकी स्थापना की वजहों में से रहा हो।

जीर्णोद्धार: औरंगजेब के काल में बौद्ध धर्म का केंद्र सांची गुमनामी में खो गया। उसके बाद यहां चारों ओर घनी झाडियां व पेड़ उग आए। 19वीं सदी में कर्नल टेलर यहां आए तो उन्हें सांची के स्तूप बुरी हालत में मिले। उन्होंने उनको खुदवाया और व्यवस्थित किया। कुछ इतिहासकार मानते हैं उन्होंने इसके अंदर धन संपदा के अंदेशे में खुदाई की जिससे इसकी संरचना को काफ़ी नुकसान हुआ। बाद में पुराविद मार्शल ने इनका जीर्णोद्धार करवाया। चारों ओर घनी झाड़ियों के मध्य सांची के सारे निर्माण का पता लगाना और उनका जीर्णोद्धार कराके मूल आकार देना बेहद कठिन था, किंतु उन्होंने बखूबी से इसकी पुरानी कीर्ति को कुछ हद तक लौटाने में मदद की।

सांची के स्तूप दूर से देखने में भले मामूली अर्द्धगोलाकार संरचनाएं लगती हैं लेकिन इसकी भव्यता, विशिष्टता व बारीकियों का पता सांची आकर देखने पर ही लगता है। इसीलिए देश-दुनिया से बडी संख्या में बौद्ध मतावलंबी, पर्यटक, शोधार्थी, अध्येता इस बेमिसाल संरचना को देखने चले आते हैं। सांची के स्तूपों का निर्माण कई कालखंडों में हुआ जिसे ईसा पूर्व तीसरी सदी से बारहवीं सदी के मध्य में माना गया है। ईसा पूर्व 483 में जब गौतम बुद्ध ने देह त्याग किया तो उनके शरीर के अवशेषों पर अधिकार के लिए उनके अनुयायी राजा आपस में लडने-झगडने लगे। अंत में एक बौद्ध संत ने समझा-बुझाकर उनके शरीर के अवशेषों के हिस्सों को उनमें वितरित कर समाधान किया। इन्हें लेकर आरंभ में आठ स्तूपों का निर्माण हुआ और इस प्रकार गौतम बुद्ध के निर्वाण के बाद बौद्ध धर्म का प्रचार-प्रसार इन स्तूपों को प्रतीक मानकर होने लगा।

बौद्धधर्म में ईश्वरवादी सिद्धांत के स्थान पर शिक्षाओं का महत्व है। इन संरचनाओं में मंदिर से परे स्तूप एक नया विचार था। 'स्तूप' शब्द संस्कृत व पाली से निकला माना जाता है जिसका अर्थ होता है 'ढेर'। आरंभ में केंद्रीय भाग में तथागत (महात्मा बुद्ध) के अवशेष रख उसके ऊपर मिट्टी पत्थर डालकर इनको गोलाकार आकार दिया गया। इनमें बाहर से ईटों व पत्थरों की ऐसी चिनाई की गई ताकि खुले में इन स्तूपों पर मौसम का कोई प्रभाव न हो सके। स्तूपों में मंदिर की भांति कोई गर्भ गृह नहीं होता। अशोक द्वारा सांची में बनाया गया स्तूप इससे पहले के स्तूपों से विशिष्ट था। बौद्ध कला की सर्वोत्तम कृतियां सांची में बौद्ध वास्तु शिल्प की बेहतरीन कृतियां हैं जिनमें 'स्तूप', 'तोरण', 'स्तंभ' शामिल हैं। इनमें स्तूप संख्या 1 सम्राट अशोक द्वारा बनवाया गया था जिसमें महात्मा बुद्ध के अवशेष रखे गए।

क़रीब में यहां पर दो अन्य छोटे स्तूप भी हैं जिनमें उनके दो शुरुआती शिष्यों के अवशेष रखे गए हैं। पहले स्तूप की 'वेदिका' में जाने के लिए चारों दिशाओं में तोरण द्वार बन हैं। पूरे स्तूप के बाहर जहां पहले कठोर लकडी हुआ करती थी आज पत्थरों की रेलिंग है। अंदर वेदिका है व कुछ ऊंचाई तक जाने के लिए 'प्रदक्षिणा पथ' है। स्तूप के गुंबद पर पत्थरों की वर्गाकार रेलिंग (हर्मिका) बनी है व शिखर पर 'त्रिस्तरीय छत्र' है। स्तूप की वेदिका में प्रवेश के लिए चार दिशाओं में चार तोरण (द्वार) हैं। पत्थर से बने तोरणों में महात्मा बुद्ध के जीवन की झांकी व जातक प्रसंगों को उकेरा गया हैं। यह कार्य इतनी बारीकी से किया गया है कि मानो कारीगरों ने कलम कूंची से उनको गढ़ा हो। इस स्तूप के दक्षिणी तोरण के सामने अशोक स्तंभ स्थापित है। इसका पत्थर आस-पास कहीं नहीं मिलता है। माना जाता है कि 50 टन वजनी इस स्तंभ को सैकडों कोस दूर चुनार से यहां लाकर स्थापित किया गया। यहां पर एक मंदिर के अवशेष है जिसे गुप्तकाल में निर्मित माना गया है।

बौद्ध मठ: सांची के स्तूपों के समीप एक बौद्ध मठ के अवशेष हैं जहां बौद्ध भिक्षुओं के आवास थे। यही पर पत्थर का वह विशाल कटोरा है जिससे भिक्षुओं में अन्न बांटा जाता था। यहां पर मौर्य, शुंग, कुषाण, सातवाहन व गुप्तकालीन अवशेषों सहित छोटी-बडी कुल चार दर्जन संरचनाएं हैं। शुंग काल में सांची में अशोक द्वारा निर्मित स्तूप को विस्तार दिया गया जिससे इसका व्यास 70 फीट बढकर 120 फीट व ऊंचाई 54 फीट हो गई। इसके अलावा यहां पर अन्य स्तूपों का निर्माण कराया। सांची में इन स्तूपों का जीर्णोद्धार लंबे समय तक चला जिसमें इसे अद्वितीय बनाने के लिए कल्पना शक्ति का इस्तेमाल किया गया। इसके बाद शुंग व कुषाण नरेशों ने अपने काल में यहां पर अन्य स्तूप निर्मित करवाए। मौर्य, शुंग, कुषाण सातवाहन व गुप्तकाल तक बौद्ध धर्म फलता फूलता रहा किन्तु इनके पतन के उपरांत राजकीय कृपादृष्टि समाप्त होने से बौद्ध धर्म का अवसान होने लगा। लेकिन बाद के शासकों ने बौद्ध स्मारकों व मंदिरों को यथावत रहने दिया।

यूनेस्को की सूची में शामिल: धर्म व पर्यटन का संगम 'साँची' 1989 में यूनेस्को की विश्व विरासत स्थल सूची में शामिल होने के बाद से इसका महत्व बहुत बढा। बौद्ध धर्म का प्रमुख केंद्र होने के कारण यहां पर देशी व विदेशी मतावलंबियों का जमावडा लगा रहता है। सांची की भव्यता को देखने को प्रतिदिन हजारों पर्यटक पहुंचते हैं जिनमें विदेशी सैलानियों की बडी संख्या होती है। इस सारे परिसर के प्रबंधन व संरक्षण का कार्य भारतीय पुरातत्व सर्वेक्षण विभाग के अधीन है। यहां का पुरातत्व संग्रहालय भी दर्शनीय है। आरंभ में वर्ष 1919 में इसे स्तूपों के निकट बनाया गया था किंतु जैसे-जैसे सामग्री की प्रचुरता होने लगी इसे 1986 में सांची की पहाड़ी के आधार पर नए संग्रहालय भवन में स्थानांतरित कर दिया गया। इस संग्रहालय में मौर्य, शुंग, सातवाहन, कुषाण, गुप्त कालीन प्रस्तर कला के अवशेष, मूर्तियां, शिलालेख आदि देखने को मिलते हैं। सांची के इन स्मारकों की भव्यता तो आगन्तुकों को चमत्कृत करती ही है, साथ में यहां का शांत वातावरण हर आने वाले को महात्मा बुद्ध के शांति के संदेश को समझाने में मदद देता है।

संदर्भ: भारतकोश-साँची


शांति (AS, p.892) = श्री एन एल डे के अनुसार सांची का नाम है.[4]

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