The wall paintings in the Buddhist cave monasteries of Ajanta are of equal significance forthe history of Ancient Indian culture as the frescos of Pompeii for Graeco-Roman antiquity: theyare almost the sole preserved records of an art which belonged to the greatest achievementsof its time. The Ajanta paintings are not just a milestone in the history of the development ofworld art, they also convey unique insights into the life of the Ancient Indians and their culture.The painted Buddhist legends proclaim ethics, in which help for beings in distress is valuedhigher than one’s own personal welfare, and is often even worth more than one’s own life. If the Ajanta paintings until now have not received the attention that they deserve, thenthis is very much due to their poor state of preservation and the resulting unsatisfactorypublications.
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