Dharmarajika monastery, (near) Taxila, Punjab, PK

Raw data

"12. Maurya Dynasty (305 –180 BC) Chandragupta, the founder of Mauryan Dynasty is said to have lived in Taxila when Alexander captured this city. […]
13. [… Chandragupta] developed the Mauryan city at bhir mound in Taxila, where ruled his grandson, ashoka, twice as governor. He introduced buddhism in Gandhara and built the first buddhist monastery, called Dharmarajika vihara, at Taxila. Gandhara remained a part of the Mauryan empire for about a century and a half."

The Dharmarajika is a large Buddhist stupa in the area of Taxila, Pakistan. It is thought that it was established by the Maurya emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century BCE around relics of the Buddha. The stupa is also popularly called as 'Chir Tope.'The site of divided into two parts: the stupa area in the south and his monastic area in the north.
The stupa of Dharmarajika is about 3 kilometers from the Taxila museum on a metalled road. Its importance lies in the fact that one of Buddha’s body-relics was buried there. - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dharmarajika

"The stupa of Dharmarajika was started by Asoka. It is about 3 kilometers from the Taxila museum on a metalled road ; a new road is being built towards it. Its importance lies in the fact that one of Buddha’s body-relics was buried there. […]
The record, which is in the Kharoshti character and dated in the year 136 [A.D. 78] tells us that the relics were those of the Lord Buddha"

"The name Dhararajika stupa comes from an inscription of the time of the Parthian ruler Azes. The main stupa was probably built by Dhararaja, a title of the Mauryan emperor Asoka. The sit of divided into two parts: the stupa area in the south and his monastic area in the north. The main attraction on a raised terrace, approached by four flights of steps. It was long known as Chir Tope because in the 19 th century it was torn asunder (Chir) and the relics robbed by a French general of Ranjit Singh. The foundation consists of a wheel of spokes (Dharam-Chakra). Around the stupa is a paved ambulatory passage outside we have a number of votive stupa erected later by the pilgrims. On the floor of the main stupa three hoards of coins were found, as a ritual burial by the visiting pilgrims. The coins belong to the Scythian, Parthian, Kushana and Indo-Sassanian rulers. The votive stupas are of different kinds, from one of which a relic casket was recovered and presented to Sri Lanka in 1924. In between can also be seen small chapels containing Buddhas and Bodhisattvas of stucco. By the side of the river there is a row of residential cells for monks. In the monastic area there is an accumulation of several monasteries of different period, some of which have stupas in the middle. The whole construction here continued to the end of the seventh century A.D. when Buddhism declined and meet its doom for lack of patronage."
http://www.world66.com/asia/southasia/pakistan/taxila/history citing (http://www.heritage.gov.pk/html_Pages/chapter-IX.htm)

Input by: tmciolek, July 12, 2012

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 15 Jan 2013

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 200 m from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Dharmarajika monastery, PK.

General location of the Dharmarajika monastery, PK.
lat=33.744461 long=72.842217
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (http://www.fallingrain.com), 2012.

Google Map link:


Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Pakistan: Punjab

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

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

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

  • Taxila Ruins of Sirkup, approx., Lat 33.755 Long 72.829 - based on the visual identification of the site in maps, http://maps.google.com/ - tmciolek, 13 Jul 2012.

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • [missing data]

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • [missing data]

11. Date-early

  • MBM chrono-tag <=0200 - tmciolek 15 Jan 2013
  • <=0200 0200-32c 0233-66c 0267-99c 0300-32c 0333-66c 0367-99c 0400-32c 0433-66c 0467-99c 0500-32c 0533-66c 0567-99c 0600-32c 0633-66c 0667-99c 0700-32p 0633-66p 0667-99p dated-el

12. Date-intermediate

  • [missing data]

13. Date-late

  • MBM chrono-tag 0700-32p 0633-66p 0667-99p - tmciolek 15 Jan 2013

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • archaeological, architectural

16. Additional notes

  • [missing data] (incl. details of the size of the monastic population)

17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

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