The Great Tope of Manikyala

J. Neelis neelisja at U.WASHINGTON.EDU
Tue Apr 28 00:55:27 UTC 1998

Dear list members,

Further references to the Manikyala stupa include:

Elizabeth Errington and Joe Cribb with Maggie Claringbull (editors).
Crossroads of Asia. Ancient India and Iran Trust, Cambridge: 1992. On
pages 183-185 the reliquary and coins found in the Manikyala stupa are
described, and on pages 222-3, a brass statue of a Buddha figure which may
have come from Manikyala is depicted and analyzed.

Sten Konow (ed.). Kharos.t.hii Insciptions with the exception of those of
Ashoka. Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum II.1. Government Printing Office,
Calcutta: 1929. A 12 line stone inscription dated in year 18 of Kanis.ka
(no. LXXVI), the reliquary inscription of a Kapiza Ks.atrapa (no. LXXVII),
and a silver disk inscription (no. LXXVIII) are edited on pgs. 145-151.

Saifur Rahman Dar. "Excavation at Manikyala", Ancient Pakistan 7
(1970-71), 6-22. In this report on excavations undertaken in 1968 on a
mound beside the main stupa at Manikyala, Dar describes the 6 sq. miles of
ancient sites which are now occupied by the village of Manikyala, a
cemetery, and fields. According to the accounts of Xuanzang and Faxian,
the Vyaaghrii Jaataka was commemorated at this place with the construction
of the huge stupa, which is still standing.

During my visit to the site in 1996, the stupa (which is visible from the
Grand Trunk Road between Rawalpindi and Mandra, and easily accessible) was
still in good condition. In terms of sheer size, it is certainly one of
the most impressive stupas which I saw in Pakistan. It is also possible to
walk up to the top of the stupa and peer down into the large shaft where
the reliquaries belonging to periods from the first to eighth centuries
A.D. were found. I would definitely recommend a visit to Manikyala,
Taxila, Swat, and the Peshawar and Lahore museums if you are interested in
the archaeology of the Buddhist period in Pakistan.

-Jason Neelis

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