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Jaggayyapeta – Ancient Center Of Buddhism

Jaggayyapeta is an ancient center of Buddhism in Andhra Pradesh. It was also known as Betavolu in ancient times. The name Jaggayyapeta was given by a zamindar (landlord) of Amaravati. The village is 75 kms from Vijayawada along the left bank of Paler, a tributary of the Krishna River.

The principal Jaggayyapeta stupa consisted of a mahacaitya (a great stupa), the drum part of which measured 22 meters in diameter. The decorated drum slabs from the early phase of building have carvings dateable to around the 2nd century BCE. The most famous sculptured slab, depicting Cakravarti Mandhata is an interesting sculpture in that the king is standing amid “seven jewels” – queen, prince, minster, wheel, elephant, and horse, which proclaim him as the king of kings.

Another sculpture of the early period is a punyasala (two-storey shrine). Belonging to the later phase of the building are the standing Buddha images, one of which has an inscription on the lower part referring to one Candraprabhacarya, who was Nagarjunacarya’s disciple’s disciple. Dated to the 5th century CE, this is now in the Amaravati site museum.

Other examples of Jaggayyapeta sculpture is in various museums, both in India and abroad. At present, the site itself contains only a few remains.