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Centre of Jaina Studies

International Journal of Jaina Studies (Online) ISSN: 1748-1074

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Understanding the Archaeological Contexts and Iconic Details of Jaina Antiquities from Rakṣatpura and Śaṅkā, District Puruliā, West Bengal

Author: Shubha Majumder
Year: 2014
International Journal of Jaina Studies (Online) Vol. 10, No. 1 (2014) 1-32

Abstract

Rāḍha, an important geo-cultural unit of ancient Bengal, was closely associated with the development of different religious traditions. Jainism, which is one of the ancient religions of India, has strong associations with the settlement parameters of this geo-cultural unit from a very early time. The present article focuses on some newly discovered Jaina antiquities from the villages of Rakṣatpura and Śaṅkā, situated along the Dāmodar river valley in the Puruliā district of West Bengal. Along this river valley there are several archaeological sites yielding old habitational remains as well as sculptural and architectural fragments. Most of these sites are associated with historical Jaina relics. Several scholars have already studied these archaeological remains from different perspectives. However, our recent discoveries have made us rethink our understanding of the nature of Jaina heritage in this region and also the iconographic development of its Jaina art. 

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