Telhara University's ruins older than Nalanda, Vikramshila
"A team of archaeologists has found four Buddhist monastery seals made of terracotta, bearing the inscriptions - Sri Prathamshivpur Mahavihariyaye Bikshu Sanghas - in Pali language in Nalanda district that indicated the university's real name, which is usually described as Telhara University," Kishor said.
Kishor said Chinese traveller Heuen Tsang visited Telhara in the 7th century AD and he mentioned the university as "Teleadaka" in his narrative.
"Bricks' dimension 42x32x6 cm revealed a Kushan, first century AD, influence. That is a strong evidence that the Telhara University is older than fourth century's Nalanda University and seventh century's Vikramshila University.".
Kishor said the archaeological discovery was a landmark achievement for Bihar.
Atul Kumar Verma, director of state archaeology, said: "It is a positive development in the field of excavation in Bihar."
"After discovery of remains of fourth century ancient Nalanda and eight century Vikramshila universities, this is the discovery of remains of third ancient university in the state," Verma said.
|Chinese traveller Heuen Tsang visited Telhara in the 7th century AD and |
he mentioned the university as “Teleadaka” [Credit: IE/Ravi S Sahani]
Verma said Heuen Tsanng has given a graphic account of a cluster of as many as seven Buddhist monasteries flourishing at "Teleadaka", also called "Tiladhak", at Telhara site, where about a thousand monks studied under the Mahayana school of Buddhism.
The excavation at Telhara site was started in 2009 after the then chief minister Nitish Kumar took special interest in it.
Source: IANS [December 15, 2014]