My Missing Countries/ Sites List

Complete List of UNESCO World Heritage Sites - Missing and Received can be seen HERE

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

India: Elephanta Caves

"The 'City of Caves', on an island in the Sea of Oman close to Bombay, contains a collection of rock art linked to the cult of Shiva. Here, Indian art has found one of its most perfect expressions, particularly the huge high reliefs in the main cave."
Source: UNESCO World Heritage Site List
The construction time of the famous Elephanta Caves is still very much debated and varies from the 6th century to the 8th century according to different specialists. They constitute one of the most striking collections of rock-art in India. The above postcard features a dancing but broken sculpture of Shiva as Nataraja and is dancing the celestial dance.
There are two groups of caves. To the east, Stupa Hill (thus named because of a small brick Buddhist monument at the top) contains two caves, one of which is unfinished, and several cisterns. To the west, the larger group consists of five rock-cut Hindu shrines. The main cave is universally famous for its carvings to the glory of Shiva, who is exalted in various forms and act ions. The cave consists of a square plan mandapa whose sides measure about 27 m.
The postcard was sent to me by Anuradha Shankar from Mumbai in Maharashtra State of India.
The postcard also features a beautiful Butterfly Stamp of India. This Red Butterfly Indian Stamp was issued by India Post on 20 November 2000 and is of Rupees 15 denomination. It is a part of definitive series - Wildlife. The back of the postcard also shows a nice monogram of India Post.


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