The expected caption in the top-right corner is missing, where the edge of the folio has been torn.

Ten kneeling figures are arranged over three levels, all facing the same direction. Ascetics can be identified by their robes and monastic equipment. Two monks are in the upper row on the left, two nuns are in the lowest row on the left. The other people shown are lay Jains. There are three men and three ladies, one of the latter in the bottom row. All of them have their hands folded in respect and face a person who is outside the picture.

This is a standard image at the end of Kalpa-sūtra manuscripts. It shows members of Mahāvīra’s fourfold communitycaturvidha saṅgha – listening to his teaching with hands folded in respect. Here the monastic community is represented by a nun and two monks wearing characteristic Śvetāmbara robes and holding their mouth-cloths in front of them. The lay communityśrāvakas and śrāvikās – is represented by various men and women. Note how the men have beards and long hair, in contrast to the monks.

The long protruding eye is a typical feature of western Indian painting. Its origin is unclear.

Other visual elements

The original paper has been pasted onto a new base. As with many Kalpa-sūtra manuscripts, there is a clear intention to make the manuscript a valuable and remarkable object in itself. This aim is signalled by the:

  • use of gold in the paintings, margins and ornamental motifs
  • decorated border with blue floral motifs
  • single diamond filled with gold ink and surrounded by blue ornamental motifs.

The single golden diamond in the centre is a symbolic reminder of the way in which manuscripts were bound at one time. Strings through one or more holes in the paper were used to thread together the loose folios so the reader could turn them over easily. The shape is in one of the places where the holes would once have been.

A single diamond means a verso side.

However, the borders of this page are torn, and even the illustration is slightly damaged.


The elaborate script used is the Jaina Devanāgarī script, which is here like calligraphy. It is used for writing numerous Indian languages, here for Ardhamāgadhī Prakrit.

There are a few notable features of this script, which:

  • is an old type in the way the sounds e and o are notated when used with a consonant, known as pṛṣṭhamātrā script
  • contains red vertical lines that mark out verse divisions, with a single line dividing a verse in two while double lines are found at the end of the verse.

At the beginning of line 3 the number 62 is a paragraph number.

The lines in smaller script above and below the main text and in the margins are explanations in Sanskrit of phrases found in the central part. The two small parallel lines like slanted = after the words are meant to separate the explanations.