Four Gateways Offbeat Attraction in Sanchi - Video Reviews, Photos, History | HolidayIQ

Four Gateways Overview

Ranked 2 of 18 sightseeing in Sanchi

The Great Stupa is surrounded by four gateways which are popularly called Toranas and are named as northern, southern, eastern and western. The Northern Gateway is crowned by a wheel of law and showcases all the miracles connected to Buddha that are mentioned in the Jatakas. The Southern Gateway has carvings that showcase the birth of Gautama Buddha.

The Eastern Gateway was built in 35 BC and is one of the four gateways located in Sanchi that depict the different incidents of Gautama Buddha’s life. The Eastern Gateway displays the incident when Gautama left the palace for his enlightenment. This gate also shows the dream of Maya, Gautama’s mother before he was born. There are four elephants that act as a support to the architraves of the gate. The Western Gateway displays the seven incarnations of Lord Buddha.

These gateways have the carvings of early Buddhist art which mostly centres on the depiction of Buddha in symbols like the lotus which represents his birth, the tree that stands for his enlightenment, the wheel from the title of his first sermon, the footprints and throne that stands for his presence.

Of all the stories depicted in the gateways, two of the most touching are that of Prince Vessantara who gave away his wife, children and wealth for charity and kindness. The other one is that of Buddha who as a monkey king sacrificed his life for his friends. There are various inscriptions on gateways that speak of the donors along with the ivory workers from Vidisha who had done the sculpting of the stone.
 

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Videos

West Gate outer face pillar heads have Yakshas

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Western gate Inner face narrates many tales Of Buddha

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Inner face Northern Gate Bimimbisara's visit etc

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Right front pillar tales of Buddha's life and Gateway

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Northern gate pillar faces monkey receiving Honey

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Northern Gateway Well intact tales are masterly sculpted

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Scenes of Indra Dev & Miracles etc are on Pillars of East Gate

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Rear side on beams 7 Buddhas, relics war are main

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Left pillar Sculpted the deer park Ashoka with Queen

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

Central beam Ramagram Stupa, top heavenly figures

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Four Gateways

Rizwanuddin Rafiq
13th Mar 19

What travellers are saying about Four Gateways

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  • Best Time: During DayLength of visit: 1-2hrs
  • Length of visit: 2-3hrsBest Time: During Day
Facilities available
  • Food available for purchaseFood available for purchase
  • Bathroom facilitiesBathroom facilities
  • Camera/Video allowedCamera/Video allowed
  • Wearing of shoes/footwear allowedWearing of shoes/footwear allowed

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Famous for:
Offbeat Attractions
Entry:
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99% voted as clean

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Rizwanuddin Rafiq5.0/5

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Satavahanas beautiful contribution

Four elaborately carved ornamental gateways were contributed to the embellishment of the Buddhist Great Stupa of Sanchi by the Satavahanas In the 1st century BCE, as they patronized Prakrit language instead of Sanskrit. They supported Buddhism as well as Brahmanism. Who were the grantee of the Mauryas.Although all these four gateways and facing all the four directions made of stone, they were carved and constructed in the manner of wood and the gateways were covered with narrative sculptures. They showed scenes from the life of the Buddha integrated with everyday events that would be familiar to the onlookers and so make it easier for them to understand the Buddhist creed as relevant to their lives. On these stone carvings the Buddha was never depicted as a human figure. Instead the artists chose to represent him by certain attributes, such as the horse on which he left his father's home, his footprints, or a canopy under the Bodhi tree at the point of his awakening. The human body was thought to be too confining for the Buddha. During the reign of Kshatrapas of Malwa and Sanchi imported four Buddha's stone images and placed inside the railing of Great Stupa, facing the four entrances.These four gate-ways are the grand gift by the Satavahana Emperor Satakarni, of Ananda, the son of Vasathi, the foreman of the artisans of Rajan Siri Satakarni. Carved decoration of the Northern gateway to the Great Stupa of Sanchi. Torana Panels: Chaddanta, Sujata's offering, Vessantara Jataka, East Columns: Shakra's visit, Royal procession, Bimbisara's visit, West Column: Foreigners, Monkeys, Kapilvastu. All the four gate ways are exclusively sculpted, carved and narrates different stories with various images as in the southern gate Amrapali, who was the most beautiful and active supporter of the Buddhist order, quite notable.Visitors should not carry any bag or luggage as not allowed, and proper arrangements for drinking water and neat and clean toilets and a restaurant are available. Visitors have to walk and climb up and down to see many other attractions like Stupa No. 2, 3 other temple's ruins etc, so must wear comfortable footwear. Its a world Heritage and Archaeological Department is maintaining nicely. Visitors may take the help of guides available at nominal charges. Visitors will enjoy and will carry a message of love and peace from here.

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Photos of Four Gateways

Four Gateways, Sanchi

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Rizwanuddin Rafiq

Staues Inside The Stone Fencing

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