Cave 1

Cave 1 is located at the far eastern end of the Tianlongshan caves site more than thirty meters from the the next cave, Cave 2. It is one of the larger caves, believed to be of the Northern Qi period. The facade still has part of the eave over the entrance porch showing architectural elements of posts and brackets and tiled roof carved in stone. The porch is about 3.5 meters wide and has an old stele carved on the right side. There was a dedicatory inscription carved on it, but only a few characters are now legible. The interior is a square chamber with niches on the back and side walls, each formerly containing a seated Buddha and two bodhisattvas.

Cave 1 exterior

Tianlongshan Cave 1 exterior 3

Detail of exterior showing carved brackets based on wooden architectural construction.

Tianlongshan Cave 1 exterior 2

Historical photo, Cave 1 exterior with inscribed stele showing at the right.

Tianlongshan historical photo Cave 1 exterior

Cave 1 interior, north (back) wall niche with seated Maitreya Buddha and guardian lions.

Tianlongshan Cave 1 back north wall

Historical photo, Cave 1 north wall

Tianlongshan historical Cave 1 back north wall

Cave 1 east wall with seated Buddha on square Sumeru throne

Tianlongshan Cave 1 east wall

Historical photo, Cave 1 east wall

Tianlongshan historical Cave 1 right east wall tt.5

Cave 1 west wall niche. The Buddha sits on a lotus throne and one remaining standing bodhisattva attendant. Small heavenly musicians appear at the base of the altar.

Tianlongshan Cave 1 left (west) wall

Historical photo, Cave 1 west wall

Tianlongshan historical Cave 1 left west wall tt.4