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India’s Ancient Capital of Nandivardhan Investigated

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

NAGARDHAN, INDIA—The Indian Express reports that archaeologists from Deccan College have excavated the ancient capital of Nandivardhan. The city was home to the Vakataka dynasty, which ruled from A.D. 250 to 550, and is known for building the rock-cut Buddhist monuments in the Ajanta Caves of western India. The excavation, led by Shrikant Ganvir, has recovered the bones of domesticated animals including goats, sheep, pigs, cats, horses, and fowls; ceramics; ear studs made of glass; inscribed copper plates; votive shrines; an iron chisel; terracotta bangles and figurines; and a stone figurine of a deer. The artifacts have helped to confirm that Prithvisena, a Vataka king, moved the capital to Nandivardhan from Padmapura. The team also recovered a clay seal naming Prabhavatigupta, the chief queen of the Vakataka king Rudrasena II, which established that she became head of state after the king's death. An intact image of Ganesha, made without ornaments, is thought to have been used privately, and suggests the elephant-headed god was widely worshiped. For more, go to “Early Buddhism in India.”

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