Archaeological Museum

Termez Archaeological Museum

A buddhist temple and monastery complex in 1 km to the north-west from Old Termez.

It was built in the 1st century and had a rectangular form of 117X34 m spreading from north-west to south-east. It consists of a temple, a monastery, a refectory and a separately standing Stupa.

The centre of the complex is formed by a temple with a square yard and 19 premises along its perimeter. Along the walls of the yard with the remnants of murals runs as a «sufa» (raised platform) with a colonnaide. In the south-western part of the yard stands the shrine. Near the entrance there is a painting of a Buddha’s head in a halo. On its right it is flanked by small figures of standing and sitting Buddhas, monks and laymen, and on its left – by figures of local deities coming toward Buddha.

Inside the shrine, to the left of the entrance, are portrayed two standing Buddha’s figures of women of smaller sizes. On the opposite side are donators in Kushan costumes. On the floor the numerous fragments of gypsum and clay sculptures and limestone bas-relief showing a sitting Buddha and two monks.

The monastery included a yard with a colonnaide and 13 premises.

The refectory, also consisting of a yard and 13 premises, adjoined the temples from the south-east. In some of them there have survived hearths for cooking food, and a great number of pottery pieces with inscriptions in the kharoshthi, Brahmi, Bactrian and an unidentified scripts.

On the floor were found coins initiating the coins of Heliocles, Vima Kadphises, Bezimyanniy (nameless) king and Kanishka, and under the debris -coins of Huvishka and Vasudeva.

To the north – east from the temple stands a large Stupa with a cross -shaped foundation, and a smaller round Stupa bricked – up inside (D.3, H.2.8 m), dating back to the 1st century В. C.

The complex was supplied with water from the Amudarya with the help of a aqueduct 2.5 km long (the embankment of the aqueduct usually regarded as the north city wall of the Kushan period).

In the 4th century the complex was looted by Sassanid troops (coins of Shapoor I and and Khormizd I) and soon ceased to exist. In the 5th and the early 6lh centuries a part of its premises were used as burial places (coins of Khormizd II and imitations of Peroze’s coins).

By the beginning of the 9 th century, the ruins of the temple-and-monastery complex looked like a hill, in which a treasure of silver Homayad’s and Abbasid’s dirham’s was hidden.