Damdam Pirsthan Dhibi

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Damdam Pirsthan Dhibi situated in the village Donar of Bhojgati union under the upazila Manirampur of Jessore district. This archaeological site is 6km away from Manirampur Bazar. The mound is 100m west of Chatiantala Bus stand on Jessore-Satkhira High way. Excavation was started in this site in 2004-05. The remains of an east facing temple is exposed as a result of successive four years excavation. The temple consists of 24 cells of irregular size and shape including the central cellar. As many as two phases of construction are noticed in the temple. In the first phase the temple was almost square (22m x 21m). In the second phase the temple was extended towards east keeping the original one almost intact. As a result the structure became oblong (33.05m x 21m) in shape. The circumambulatory path of the first phase temple was abandoned and a new path was constructed in the second phase and the exterior face of the temple was decorated with the terracotta plaque depicting lotus and various deities. Another small temple, stupa and open platform etc. were built. Hence it appears that the works in the temple were expanded during this (second) phase.

The construction of the first phase temple may be assigned to the second-third century AD based on the discovery of the antimony rod and the rouletted ware along with other antiquities from the site. Accordingly this temple may be considered as one of the ancient temples exposed by the archaeological excavations in Bangladesh.

The importance of the site was decreased after the destruction of the temple and the area was abandoned. In course of time the site took shape of a mound and as a result its historical value disappeared from the local people. Gradually it became a cemetery. The existence of the unpaved graves supports this hypothesis. Subsequently some saint (Pir) made a haunt over this mound. Thus the site got its identity to the contemporary people as Damdam Pirsthan Dhibi. [Md. Shafiqul Alam]