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Column of Heliodorus

113 BC, Besnagar, Madhya Pradesh

This inscribed Garuda column, in Besnagar near Udayagiri, was erected in honor of Vasudeva (an early name for Vishnu) by Heliodorus, who was a Bactro-Greek envoy from Gandhara to the court of Vidisha. The Garuda is missing from the top of the column, which stands about 6.5m (21') high. Decoration on the column includes geese, a reed-and-bead pattern, lotus leaves, vegetation, fruit, and garlands. Its bell capital is similar to earlier Mauryan examples.