Barbar Caves

Around 40 kms from Bodhgaya is an unexploited Buddhist site not many are aware of. The hills of Barabar and the Nagarjuni are now important archeological sites. Here one can find seven rock cut caves. Out of the seven caves four are located on the hill of Barabar. Most probably built during the time of Mauryan emperor Ashoka; these caves are carved out of solid rocks which bear details of the life of Buddha. The caves consist of temples and sanctuaries carved out of huge granite outcrops and are designed to look as if they have been made of wood.The four caves have names each and are different in their own way.
The Lomas Rishi Cave, which is sculpted to resemble lattice screens, is the first available example of the famous Buddhist Chaitya Arch style in India. The entrance is in Egyptian form and only walls of the outer rooms are polished.
The Sudama Cave, known in ancient times as Nigoha Kubha or Banyan Tree Cave. It is made during the 2nd century B.C. The cave has two chambers and the interiors are have highly polished surfaces.
The Karan Chopar, a single-chamber-structure with a vaulted roof and simple opening also carved out during the same time has an inscription saying the name of the cave to be Supriya cave.
The Vishva Zopari Cave is the last two chambered cave also carved around the same time.

The Nagarjuni hills have the rest of three caves namely;
The Gopi Cave which is the most important and has a number of inscriptions on it. A number of inscriptions have been found here. It is believed that in the middle of 19th century, some Islamic saints used to live in these caves. The other two caves are the Vapuiyaka Kubha and the Vedathika Kubha.

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