Balkh monastic cluster, (near) Balkh, Velayat-e Balkh, AF

Raw data

"From the Memoirs of Xuanzang, we learn that, at the time of his visit in 630, there were in Balkh, or its vicinity, about a hundred Buddhist convents, with 3,000 devotees, and that there was a large number of stupas, and other religious monuments and that Buddhism was flourishing in the Bactrian portion of Western Turk empire."
Input by: tmciolek, 12 Jul 2010.

“[Balkh…] The Chinese monk Fa-Hein (法顯) was here around 400 AD. Xuanzang visited Balkh in 628 (貞觀二年) when it was a flourishing centre of Hinayana Buddhism. According Xuanzang there were about a hundred Buddhist monasteries, some 30,000 monks and a large number of stupas in the area. “The country measure 800 Li east-west and 400 Li north-south. The Oxus is in the north. The capital has a circumference of about 20 Li. People called it Little Rajagriha. The city is well fortified but it does not have a large population. Crops are abundant, with a great variety of flowers. One tooth of the Buddha is kept here [= in Nava Vihara], 1 inch long, 0.8-0.9 inch in circumference, yellowish white and shiny. “
Input by: tmciolek, 4 May 2013.

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 4 May 2013

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 20 km from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Balkh monastic cluster, Afhganistan.

General location of the Balkh monastic cluster, Afhganistan.
lat=36.7583 long=66.8989
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (, 2009.

Google Map link:,%20AF)&ll=36.7583,66.8989&spn=05.0,05.0&t=k&hl=en

Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Afghanistan:Velayat-e Balkh

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

  • [missing data]

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • Theravada - (Krishan 1996:81)

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • [missing data]

11. Date-early

  • [missing data]

12. Date-intermediate

  • MBM chrono-tag 0600-32c 0633-66c 0667-99p - tmciolek 25 Dec 2012
  • 0600-32c 0633-66c 0667-99p dated-x

13. Date-late

  • [missing data]

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • [missing data]

16. Additional notes

or, with 30,000 monks -
17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

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