Monday, April 13, 2015

Bhimbetka Caves - An ancient Heritage Site

Bhimbetka Caves - An ancient Heritage Site

Bhimbetka Caves, located near Bhopal at a distance of 46 km, are among the most fascinating and attention-grabbing tourist destinations in the state of Madhya Pradesh. These caves are known for their huge archeological importance in India. These caves possess a treasure of prehistoric art in the country.

History of Bhimbetka Caves 
The Bhimbetka Caves were discovered accidentally by Dr V. S. Wakankar, a well known Indian archeologist, in 1958 while he was on his way to Nagpur. The Bhimbetka Caves depict the essence of ancient cave art in India. The charm of the place is extremely lively, even though it is dilapidated. The "Bhimbetka" is derived from the word "Bhim Baitka" after a character in the Mahabharata. Based on mythology, the Bhimbetka Cave's name is associated with the name "Bhima" who was one of the "Pandavas". The entire meaning of the name stands for "The Lounge of Bheem" because this is where he rested after being exiled from his kingdom along with his Brothers.

About Bhimbetka Caves

The caves reflect the lifestyle of some of the earliest human races in the country. Records mentioning Bhimbetka Caves were found on a Buddhist site. Recognizing its exceptional importance to mankind, the caves were declared as a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2003. This is the 22ndworld heritage site declared by UNESCO in India. With time, the excavations undertaken by Hass, Misra and Wakankar revealed more secrets of the Mesolithic, Acheulian and Stone Age cultures.

These pre-historic caves house the largest collection of paintings and ancient art by ancient mankind in India. The paintings depicted on the walls are not any routine work of art; rather they are extraordinary pieces of art having no contemporary matches. Besides, the Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka shed light on the early years of the human race as they as much as 15,000 years old. The recent paintings in the caves date back 1,000 years. There are five clusters of natural rock shelters with paintings depicting a hunting and gathering economy.

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