Samarangana-sutradhara (Summary)

by D. N. Shukla | 1960 | 15,592 words | ISBN-10: 8121506115 | ISBN-13: 9788121506113

This page describes Rucaka etc. 64 Prasadas which is chapter 50 English summary of the Samarangana-Sutradhara by Bhoja. This work in Sanskrit representing a voluminous treatise on Vastu-Shastra (the science of Architecture), encompassing a broad range of subjects, such as Architecture, Shilpa-shastra (Iconography, Arts and Crafts) but also deals with Creation-theory, Geography, Philosophu, etc.

Chapter 50 - Rucaka etc. 64 Prāsādas

[Note: This chapter corresponds to Chapter 49 of the original Samarāṅgaṇa-Sūtradhāra]

Here in this initial chapter on Prāsāda architecture the origin of the Prāsādas has been indicated. It is said that the Creator Brahmā, the founder Lord of the Vāstu-Vidyā, created five big and beautiful Vimānas, movable in the path of the sky, macle of gold and decorated with jewels—they were Vairāja, Kailāśa, Puṣpaka, Maṇika and Triviṣṭapa to be used by Himself, the Trident-bearer Śiva, Lord of wealth Kubera, Noose-holder Varuṇa and the Lord of the Universe the great Viṣṇu respectively. Similarly he also created oilier Vimānas for the gods like Sun and others. From the selfsame five Vimānas, lie then created five Prāsādas, to be built of stone or burnt brick for the adoration of the towns. Their names being the same and in shape Vairāja is square, Kailāśa circular or oval, Puṣpaka rectangular, Maṇika elliptical and Triviṣṭapa octagonal.

Then follow the 24 varieties of square Vairāja, ten varieties of circular Kailāśa, ten varieties of rectangular Puṣpaka, ten varieties of elliptical Maṇika and lastly the ten varieties of octagonal Triviṣṭapaka, thus making the total 61 and each variety described in detail.

Special characteristics of these Temples are firstly their superstructures being devoid of Śikharas, (the most common characteristics of the later phases of temple architecture) and their roofs being of the Chādya variety, and secondly, these are hall temples with excessive application of the pillars, built in the material of wood with so many other wooden joineries. The temples arc an illustration of the initial stage of development of temple architecture in India when the employment of wood was the rule of the day (cf. the wooden origin of the Indian Architecture).

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