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The Soul of Bharat : Marvels in Marble

Dilwara Temples, located near Mount Abu,  are famous for their use of white marble and intricate marble carvings. Interestingly, Jain values are reflected through the architecture of these temples

Marble is a metamorphic rock. Commonly called calcite or dolomite, marble is a term that is also used for metamorphosed limestone. Makrana is a type of white marble, and it is mined from the town of Makrana in Rajasthan. Because of its refined quality, it is used in many of the iconic structures of Bharat. Taj Mahal in Agra and Victoria Memorial in Kolkata are made out of Makrana marble. Makrana is regarded as the oldest place in India with a marble quarry. Upon mining, Makrana marble is not subjected to any form of treatment but is used in cutting and chiselling straight away. Makrana stone has a high percentage of calcium and is therefore resistant to water seepage. Makrana White Marble, Brown Albeta Marble, Dungri Marble, Albeta Marble, and Pink Marble are the different types of marble. There are many temples in Western India that are out of marble.

Dilwara Temples are located about 2.5 km away from Mount Abu. Vimal Shah built these between 11th and 16th century. These temples are famous for their use of white marble and intricate marble carvings. Jain values reflected through the architecture of these temples are most beautifully justified by the white-coloured marble used for the temples. Chaturmukha Dharana Vihara at Ranakpur in the Pali district of Rajasthan was constructed in the 15th century. This is another example of the use of marble for construction. The Ranakpur temple is one of the Jain culture’s largest and most important temples. The campus includes various temples such as Chaumukha temple, Surya temple, Suparshvanatha temple and Amba Temple. The temple is a grand white marble structure spread over 48,000 square feet (4,500 m2) with 1,444 marble pillars, twenty-nine halls, eighty domes and 426 columns. The 1,444 marble pillars, carved in exquisite detail, support the temple. The pillars are individually carved, and no two pillars are the same. The temple is famous for its beautiful carved idol of Parshvanath made out of a single marble slab. The idol has 1,008 snakeheads and numerous tails.

  • Dr Ujwala Chakradeo

Source : Organiser

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