Buddhistic cloister of Ajina-Tepa

Date of Submission: 09/11/1999
Category: Cultural
Submitted by:
Off. of Preservation and Restoration of Monum. of History and Culture, Artistic Ex. Min. of Culture
Coordinates: The cloister of Ajina-Tepa is situated at a distance of 12 km from the east from the city of Kurgan-Tiube.
Ref.: 1382


The cloister has a right-angled form (100 x 50 m.), it consists of two parts, there is a square yard surrounded buildings, in the center of it. There is a room in the middle of every side of the yard. The room consists of two parts too. The first part is an ivan (summer-house). There is a passage to the square cell in the back side of the ivan. These twin rooms are simmetrically situated face to face. The ivons are connected with crank corridors. The exits led from the corridors to the yard, other buildings, small monk cells of one or two rooms, economic premises. There was the second floor where it could be gone with a pandus but it didn't remain.

An entrance to the cloister was done in the center of the east façade there was an entrance-hall with a pandus. There was a hall for meetings of the monk community in the west part of the yard. A temple territory is situated in the north part. Its planning is approximately analogous to the first part, they were connected with wide passage. The central part was occupied with the Big Stupa (an element of Buddhistic temple for keeping of relics). The Big Stupa had a form of terrace cross-star form in the plan. It was oriented with its angles on the sides of world. Every façade had a staircase. The maximum size of the foundation of the Stupa is 28 m., the rest of the Stupa is 6 m. high.

There were the Small Stupas analogous to the Big Stupa but they where less than it in 10 times. They were situated in the corners of the yard and in the rooms of the north part of the temple. Beside that, the scientists found small models of the Stupas with small clay plates with buddhistic prayer.

The main building materials was clay and adobe bricks, the walls were 2,2-2,4 m. thick. The internal right-angles room were crowned with akchs, the square ones were crowned with cupolas. The cloister and the temple part were decorated with painting, big and small sculptures. The sculptures of the Buddha in different poses symbolized different stages of the life and activity of the Buddha.

There was a gigantic figure of the lying Buddha in Nirvana in the east end of the corridor of the temple part on the plane pedestal.

The sculpture was 12 m. long. All sculptures made of clay and the elements of the clothes were painted. The excavations of the monument of Ajina-Tepa finished in 1975. It is an important buddhistic cloister of Vahsh Valley.