SPACH Photo Catalogue of Major Priority Sites and Monuments:

Provinces:

Badakhshan Badghis
Baghlan
Balkh
Bamyan
Farah
Faryab
Ghazni
Ghor
Herat
Helmand
Jawzjan
Kabul
Kandahar
Kapisa
Khost
Kunar
Kunduz
Laghman
Logar
Nangarhar
Nimroz
Nuristan
Paktika
Paktya
Parwan
Samangan
Sari Pul
Takhar
Uruzgan
Wardak
Zabu
l


"B
ĀMIYĀN,

LOCATION: Bāmiyān Province.
In the mountainous district of eastern central Afghanistan, 246km by road west of Kābul

DATE:
?Graeco-Bactrian, 2nd-1st C BC. (Numismatic); Kushan-Sasanian, 2nd-7th C. (Ceramic, stylistic); Turk-pre-Mongol Islamic, 7th-13th C. (Ceramic, architectural).

DESCRIPTION: An extensive area of remains along the foot of the cliffs bordering the north side of the valley. Gor a lenghth of c. 1800 m the cliff face is honeycombed with some 750 artificial caves, all forming a part of an extensive Buddhist monastic centre. Some are very large and elaborately decorated in sculptures and frescos. There are two large standing statues of Buddha, 53 m an 38 m high respectively, with a third seated Buddha between the two. At the foot of the cliffs many mounds cover structural remains, including a large stupa to the east of the 38 m. Buddha and a series of Turkish-Ghurid fortifications. Some Graeco-Bactrian coins were also excavated here in the 19th century.

From Ball, W. Archaeological Gazetteer of Afghanistan, Paris, 1982, p. 49

CONDITION: The Buddha statues were blown by the taliban in march 2001. In 2003 the Japanese Government made a contribution of 1,800,000$ for its preservation. UNESCO is the implementing agency.

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