Bengal, a land of rivers and the home of a wonderful ancient culture, was marked by flourishing cities and ports both in the pre-Christian and post-Christian days. Chandraketugarh is one of these spots. According to R.D. Banerjee, it was one of the oldest archaeological sites in India. Unfortunately, little justice has been done to the place and the civilization of Chandraketugarh is still largely shrouded in mystery. Even the very name Chandraketugarh, instead of disclosing its identity, only clouds the hoary antiquity the place.
Sometimes around the beginning of the Christian era, Chandraketugarh: in the present-day North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal, was an eminent, greatly prospering port-city. It is today no more than measureless ruins that represent the vestiges of "a lost civilization" -- a civilization that still remains shrouded in mystery. What today survive this magnificent civilization are the archaeological remains of vastly varied descriptions. For the first time, this book, comprising 20 chapters, examines some of its antiquities, spelling out specially the motifs and symbols involved in its terracotta art -- which is believed to have hardly a parallel anywhere.
The present work is a serious attempt to explain the motifs and symbols of the lost civilization of Chandraketugarh which now survives only through her unparalleled terracotta art and other antiquities.
Dr Gourishankar De is a reputed poet, archaeologist, historian and educationist: formerly Reader and Head, Department of History, Sri Chaitanya Mahavidyalay, Habra, West Bengal.