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Numbers

Their Iconographic Consideration in Buddhist & Hindu Practices by: Fredrick W. Bunce

The book highlights the true iconographic import of numbers/ numerology in Hindu and Buddhist practices — bringing out, in detail, the unique properties of each iconographically significant number: ranged between ‘one’ (1) and ‘one thousand and twenty four’ (1024).

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ISBN: 9788124602010
Year Of Publication: 2002
Edition: 1st
Pages : xiv, 224
Bibliographic Details : Bibliography
Language : English
Binding : Hardcover
Publisher: D.K. Printworld Pvt. Ltd.
Size: 23 cm.
Weight: 550

Overview

In his effort to find an explanation for the unknown, the mysterious around him, the ancient man saw in “numbers”, among other things, a high significance. And frequently used them to explain the ineffable or even predict through “numerology”. Astrology became a parallel, interwoven science – which, like numerology, was used to predict the future and also to determine propitious times for venturing upon an important activity: be it the naming of a child, marriage, or construction of a building. Numbers, in fact, have always held a strong fascination for all various cultures of Asia. Considered to inhere both mystic and iconic significance in the Hindu and Buddhist worlds, their importance was emphasized in celebrated architectural treatises, like the Manasara and the Mayamata and they, (together with other complex procedures), were invariably utilized by the priest-architect (the sthapati) in the planning, design and construction of temples and other buildings. Not only the numbers, but even the geometric forms (like the circle, square or rectangle) came to have numerological and, consequently, iconographic importance in these cultures. Yet another fascinating work from an internationally known scholar of Oriental Art, the book highlights the true iconograpic import of numbers/numerology in Hindu and Buddhist practices — bringing out, in detail, the unique properties of each iconographically significant number: ranged between ‘one’ (1) and ‘one thousand twentyfour’ (1024). Professor Bunce here perceives ‘numerology’ not as the arcane or occult science, but as an academic proposition concerned with the ethos of numbers and the genesis of their importance within the Hindu and Buddhist art, particularly architecture. A useful read for the scholars of iconography.

Contents

Preface
Abbreviations
Introduction : Numbers as Symbols
Numbers : Including their Make Up, Denotations, Exemplifications and Associations
Bibliography
Acknowledgements

Meet the Author
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1935
Fredrick W. Bunce, a PhD and a cultural historian of international eminence, is an authority on ancient iconography and Buddhist arts. He has been honoured with prestigious awards/commendations and is listed in Who’s Who in American Art and the International Biographical Dictionary, 1980. He is currently Professor Emeritus of Art, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana. He has authored the following books all published by D.K. Printworld: Buddhist Textile of Laos, Lan Na and the Isan - The Iconography of Design Elements. A Dictionary of Buddhist and Hindu Iconography. An Encyclopaedia of Buddhist Deities, Demigods, Godlings, Saints and Demons (2 vols.). An Encyclopaedia of Hindu Deities, Demigods, Godlings, Demons and Heroes (3 vols.). The Iconography of Architectural Plans - A Study of the Influence of Buddhism and Hinduism on Plans of South and South-east Asia. Islamic Tombs in India - The Iconographical and Genesis of their Design. Monuments of India and the Indianized States. The Mosques of the Indian Subcontinent - Their Development and Iconography. Mudras in Buddhist and Hindu Practices - An Iconographic Consideration. Numbers - Their Iconographic Consideration in Buddhist and Hindu Practices. Royal Palaces, Residences and Pavilions of India - An Iconographic Consideration. The Sacred Dichotomy: Thoughts and Comments on The Duality of Female and Male Iconography in South Asia and the Mediterranean. The Tibetan Iconography of Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and other Deities - A Unique Pantheon. The Yantra of Deities and their Numerological Foundations - An Iconographic Consideration.
Books of Fredrick W. Bunce
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Numbers 2002