CONTENTS:- 1. Settlement Pattern in Early Age. 2. Patronage and Identity based on Inscriptions and Seals. 3. Samgharamas, Caityas and Stupas in Sarnath. 4. Asoka's Pillar at Sarnath. 5. Sarnath: Space and Time. 6. Aftermath in Sarnath.
This volume attempts a reconstruction of the different Buddhist traditions that evolved at Sarnath between the preaching of the Four Noble Truths (sixth century BCE) and the construction of Dharmachakrajina Vihara (twelfth century CE) in the early medieval age. Sarnath is one of the eight centres of Buddhism. This volume attempts an objective assessment of the history, rise and decline of Sarnath by studying archaeological, epigraphic and literary sources. It explores the religious traditions, origin and geo-morphological construction of the Sarnath region, dhammacakkapabattana, its religious and architectural symbolism and patronage. The probable causes of the decline of Buddhism at Sarnath have also been discussed in the context of Chinese, Indian and Persian sources, and archaeological reports.