Takht-i-Bhai monastery, (towards) Mardam, NWF Province, PK

Raw data

"The Buddhist monastic complex of Takht-i-Bahi (Throne of Origins) was founded in the early 1st century. Owing to its location on the crest of a high hill, it escaped successive invasions and is still exceptionally well preserved. Nearby are the ruins of Sahr-i-Bahlol, a small fortified city dating from the same period.
Date of Inscription: 1980
Criteria: (iv), North West Frontier Province
N34 19 15 E71 56 45" [Lat 34.32083333 Long 71.94583333 - tmc]

"The most striking Buddhist site I visited was Tahkt-i Bahi near Mardan. This site was a large monastery located on a hilltop, occupied from the 1st to 7th century A.D."

"Takht Bhai (or Takhtbai or Takht-i-Bahi) is a Buddhist monastic complex dating to the 1st century BCE."

Takht-i-Bhai, Pakistan Page
Other names: Takht Bai,Takht-i-Bhāi
World:Pakistan:North-West Frontier Province
Lat 34.2819 Long 71.9283

Lat 34.320833 Long 71.945833 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takht_Bhai & http://toolserver.org/

Yaghi Mir Adam Kalla, Pakistan Page
Other names: Maradam,Yāghi Mīr Ādam Kalla
World:Pakistan:North-West Frontier Province
Latitude 32.9661 Longitude 70.9789

"Takhat-e-Bahi monastery is one of the most well-known and well-preserved sites of the Gandhara period. Most of the Buddha statues, as seen today in various European museums, were recovered from this site as well as from the nearby site of Sahri Bahlole.
The monastery and stupas were founded in the 6th or 7th centuries. Surrounding the monastery on the ridge above it to the south and on the spurs to the east and west one could see the ruins of private houses which were, most probably, three story structures. The monastery courts, 38 votive Stupa, prayer chambers, several other chapels, monks cells and other ruins indicate what a wonderful place it must have been a glorious gem in the history of Buddhism."

"K’iu-tsiu-k’io is generally identified with the Kushan king Kujula Kadphises, named on late imitations of the Indo-Greek Hermaeus coin series in the Kabul valley region, and subsequently as the "Prince Kapa" on the celebrated Takht-i Bahi (remains of a Buddhist monastery in Pakistan) inscription (Konow, 1929, p. 62). There he appears as subordinate to the Indo-Parthian ruler Gondophares. The inscription is dated to the latter’s twenty-sixth year, and the year 103 of an era that is evidently the Azes/Vikrama Era of 58 BCE. Thus the Azes date of the inscription is 103 – 58 = 45 CE, and the first year of Gondophares (presumably at Taxila) is 45 - 26 = 19 CE." - Bivar (2009)

Input by: tmciolek, Jul 6, 2010

Takht-i-Bahi (lat.34 degrees 17 minutes N x Long. 71 degrees 57 minutes E) is located about eight miles north-west of Mardan (District Peshawar, Pakistan)on the top of the spur of a hill with a broad view of the valley below. An inscription dates the site to the first half of the first century CE, but the earliest portion were likely a century earlier. Xuan Zang (7th century) describes the main stupa as the biggest and most spectacular he had ever seen. The large monastery built by King Kanishka west of the stupa was already in ruins by the time of Xuan Zang. An inscription on the site notes the visit of Viradeva, who likely came for study from Nagarahara (Jalalabad) at the time of the third Palava king.
A long flight of steps descends from the stupa area to the monastery. The cells surround a central court on three sides and the fourth side semms to have housed kitchens and storerooms. This source does not give the number of cells. Pg. 119-120

Input by: Stewart Gordon 05 Apr 2015

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 26 May 2015

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 Takht-i-Bhai monastery, PK.

General location of the Takht-i-Bhai monastery, PK.
Lat 34.286356 Long 71.946815
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (http://www.fallingrain.com), 2010.

Google Map link:


Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Pakistan: North West Frontier Province

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

  • Approx. Lat 34.286356 Long 71.946815 - based on visual identification of the ruins of the Takht-i-Bhai monastery in maps/satellite monastery magery, maps.google.com- https://www.google.com/maps/, tmciolek 26 May 2015

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

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

  • Mardam

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • [missing data]

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • [missing data]

11. Date-early

MBM chrono-tag <=0200 - tmciolek 19 Jul 2014
<=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 0600-32p 0633-66p 0667-99p dated-el

12. Date-intermediate

  • [missing data]

13. Date-late

MBM chrono-tag 0633-66p - tmciolek 19 Jul 2014

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • archaeological

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]

18. Known monks and nuns associated with this monastery

19. Available Printed Literature

  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 1]
  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 2]
  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 3]

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