Sirkap

Sirkap

Fasten your seat belts for the most exemplary journey of your life to one of the oldest cities of the world, Sirkap situated in Pakistan.

Builder and Style

Sirkap was built on the Greek pattern because it was built by the Greek King Demetrius; after he invaded ancient India around 180BC.

Rebuilt

Sirkap is also said to have been rebuilt by King Menander I.

Name

Sirkap, which means “severed head” and is the name of a mythological demon that is said to have lived on this site

Significance

The ruins, alongwith some others at Taxila became a World Heritage Site of UNESCO in 1980.

Excavation

Sir John Marshall from 1912-1930.
Mortimer Wheeler from 1944-1945.

Layers of Cities

The massive excavation encountered 7cultural phases with a maximal depth of 6.6m.

On the top there was some Kushan material.
The 2nd and 3rd layers were having late Scythian and Parthian cities.
In 4th layer, the early Scythian or Saka city was hidden.
In 5th and 6th , the Greek city was found.
The lowest layer introduced the Greek foundation.

Area

The excavated area is about 1200m long and 400m wide

Walls

The surrounding wall of the city is 6-10m high, 5-7m wide and almost 4,800m long.

Things to See

Apsidal Temple

The largest sanctuary of Sirkap, measuring about 70 by 40m with rooms for Monks.

Apsidal Temple

Double-Headed Eagle Stupa

A double-headed eagle is engraved on it, from which the name of the Stupa has been derived.

Double-Headed Eagle Stupa   Double-Headed Eagle Stupa

Coins

The coins from Sirkap are carrying much information, for they give the names of the Greek kings who ruled the city.

coin     coin

Sun Temple

The temple also served as a clock as people at Sirkap used to measure time by the shadow of the Sun on the divisions they had made on it.

  Sun Temple Sun Temple

 Buddhist Stupas

  Buddhist Stupa Buddhist Stupa

Jain Temple

Jain Temple

Buddha’s Footprints

Buddha’s Footprint

Well

well

Protection

For its safety, the remains of Sirkap have been declared `Protected Antiquity` under the Antiquities Act 1975 of Pakistan.

People of the Time

Wealthy people of Sirkap wore elegant gold and silver jewelry and used mirrors, scent flasks, ear cleaners, hairpins, toothpicks, and combs while children played with toy carts and models of birds and animals. There are even toy furniture of bone and ivory.

End

Earthquake destroyed the city in c.30 AD

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