UPSC ART & CULTURE :Rock cut architecture – Badami, Barabar, Chaitra, Vihar

Badami Cave temples

Rock-Cut Architecture of Ancient India. The exercise of making a structure by cutting it out of the regular stone is known as Rock-cut design. In this, the stone that isn’t a segment of the structure is expelled until the ideal structure is acquired. Contrasted with some other type of rock structure on the planet, Indian stone cut design is progressively different and situated in more noteworthy plenitude (in excess of 1,500 stone cut structures in India).

In addition, the strict character of Indian Rock-cut design is another highlight to be noted. The Mauryans eclipsed in cavern design and they are viewed as the pioneers of rock-cut cavern design.

Buddhist Influence on Rock-cut Architecture

Buddhism turned into the prevailing religion in the third to second century B.C. There were three explicit types of Buddhist design which created around this period – the great funerary hill or Stupa, the lobby of love or the Chaitya and the religious community or Vihara. Since the Buddhist and Jain Monks generally avoided the urban areas and towns, in this manner, Chaityas and Viharas were created along the slope.


Chaityas remained spots of love for Buddhist and Jain Monks. It had a rectangular supplication corridor with stupa set at the focal point of the lobby. Whole Chaitya had three divisions – Central Chaitya and two walkways. Focal Chaitya was isolated from the two walkways by a line of columns. Inside dividers of Chaityas were cleaned and the closure of Chaitya was apsidal fit as a fiddle.


The Viharas or religious communities were exhumed close Chaityas for the living arrangement of priests in stormy seasons. The stoneworkers here delineate different scenes from the life of the Buddha A significant point to note here is that Viharas, not at all like Chaityas, didn’t have stupa. Cavern Architecture in India can be separated into 3 unique stages

first stage (second B.C. to second Century A.D.)

In this stage, the development was only identified with Buddhism, and Buddha was spoken to emblematically for example Lotus, Wheel, and so on. The instances of this stage include Ajanta, Karla, Bhaja, Kanheri, Nasik, Bedsa caverns. It tends to be induced that a significant association existed between the religion, what’s more, trade, as Buddhist teachers, regularly constructed religious communities (collapses)closer nearness to the significant exchange courses. A portion of the caverns was moreover dispatched by well off dealers bringing about the insides of the caverns being increasingly intricate.

second stage (fifth to seventh century A.D.)

Buddha was exemplified and the arrangement of unearthings uniquely for chaitya endured equivalent to previously yet viharas experienced a few changes like a picture of Buddha was housed. By the fifth century, rock-slice cavern sanctuaries stayed to be worked in equal along with unattached basic sanctuaries.

third stage (seventh to tenth century A.D.)

The Buddhist structure conventions were additionally reached out by Hindus and Jains alongside certain changes that were reasonable for their customs.

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