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Ajanta Caves details - Cave 2

The shrine doorway of cave 2 departs from the conventional doorways, of the same cave and of cave 1.
The square motif on the side of the doorway seems to be derived from doorways of other temples in India. Many motifs in Ajanta were taken from elsewhere but adapted to the shrine here.
The notable feature of cave 2 is the heavy-limbed, but swaying Avalokitesvara, with a flywhisk, who flanks the Buddha image. This feature was to develop later, far away at elephanta. The pilasters at right front interior, with squatting dwarfs in between the medallions, are exuberantly carved.
The Harati and Panchika panel at right rear of the cave; is intricate. The narrative carving of the main figures well as the attendants, including the school children, at the base, is fascinating as a domestic scene of that time.


One of the few surviving ceilings, with charming decorations, is in cave 2.The skill with which painters lay down on scaffoldings for long years, to paint these pictures, is reminiscent of the way Michelangelo suffered physical strain while painting the ceilings of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican in Rome.
The wall showing the Thousand Buddha's is a large painting, which overwhelms one with its detailed multiplication.
This panel shows graceful cylindrical figures of the end of the 4th century A.D. going towards the shrine.
The rhythmic movement of the princess starting off the movement on the swing is on the wall of the right hand corridor. The innocent face and the bursting youth of the girl, shows the change Buddhist idea of the 5th century A.D. that physical vitality itself leads ultimately to illumination.

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