Western Gateway

Buddhist Monument in Sanchi

Pot-bellied dwarves support the architraves of the Western Gateway, which has some of the site’s most interesting scenes. The back of the bottom architrave and the south pillar's north-face top panel both show the Buddha resisting the temptation and assault by Mara (the Buddhist personification of evil), while demons flee and angels cheer.

The front of the top architrave shows the Buddha along with six Manushi-Buddhas (Buddhas who preceded him), all represented as stupas or trees. On the back of the middle architrave we see the siege of Kushinagar by seven cities that wanted a portion of the Buddha's bone relics after his death, and above the transport of the relics after the agreement to divide them into eight shares.