Archaeological Museum, Sanchi (Madhya Pradesh)
With the view of housing the object discovered in course of excavations at Sanchi, a small museum was established on the hilltop, in 1919, by Sir John Marshall, former Director General of ASI. Later on, due to inadequacy of space as well as for aesthetically displaying the museum objects, Archaeological Survey of India acquired a college building at the foot hill of Sanchi Stupa and got the exhibits shifted to the new building in the year 1966. The museum comprises of a Main hall and four galleries. Majority of the objects are from Sanchi itself and a few from its neighbourhood i.e. Gulgaon, Vidisha, Murelkhurd and Gyaraspur.
At present there are four galleries named as Gallery No. 1 to 4, besides a verandah having nine exhibits. There are 16 outstanding objects ranging in date from 3rd cent. B.C. to medieval period on display collected from the ruins of Sanchi itself and few from the neighbouring area. The Ashokan lion Capital with four lion seated back to back exhibited in an alcove in the main hall invites visitor's attention. This lion capital, of Ashokan pillar bearing typical Mauryan polish is the most outstanding exhibit and singularly attracts ones attention.
Entry to the museum is through the main hall, which serves as the key gallery. The objects aesthetically displayed in the gallery are the representative member of six cultural periods i.e. Maurya, Sunga, Satvahana, Kushana, Gupta and post Gupta period.
The colossal image of Nagaraja displayed against the northern wall is a classical representation of Sunga period. A Torana member depicting Buddha's enlightenment under a Pipal tree, is unique for its Hinayana art. The other noteworthy exhibits are Yakshi (1st Cent. B.C.), Dhyani Buddha of Mathura in spotted red sandstone (4th cent.A.D.) and Bodhisattva Padmapani (5thCent. A.D.)
Timings of visit: 10 AM to 5 PM
Entrance Fee: Rs 5/-
(Children upto 15 years free)