Lord Buddha came to Sarnath, where he delivered his first Sermon, and paved a stable foundation for Buddhism. Scriptures obviously became the most holy place and a famous Buddhist Pilgrimage. As a result, a large Buddhist landscape came up with Mrigadaya (Sarnath) at the centre. The western side of it was occupied by the learned and wise occupied by the learned and wise immigrants, the residents of Rishipattana.
There are a number of unanswered questions related to the Buddhist landscape of Varanasi, e.g. why did the lord chose to deliver his First Sermon at sarnath, also, when Varanasi was the famous city, why was periphery selected by him? The nature and successive growth of the landscape created around the place of First Sermon also is obscure. The old and recent archaeological investigations carried out in the vicinity of Sarnath have brought to light evidence which provide answers to some of the above questions, and also outline the chronology and growth of this Buddhist landscape.
The present volume is aimed at reaching a larger section of the Society, which is interested in Buddhism and Buddhist sites. Although archaeological and other scientific data has been utilised technical jargon has been avoided. The work is also aimed to promote such specialised attempts in the historical studies, when interpretation of archaeological findings of a holy place is envisaged in its geo-cultural totality.