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Stupa in Burma

A stupa in Burma.

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Definition:

A stupa (Sanskrit, "hair knot") is a type of memorial monument. The first stupas were built to house the remains of the historical Buddha. Eventually stupas were also built for the remains of revered teachers or to enshrine sacred texts or representations of the Buddha. Stupas are a standard feature of temples and monasteries.

Stupas take many forms, from round beehive- or bell-shaped structures to pagodas with many stories.

Also Known As: Thupa (Pali), Dagoba (Sinhalese), Choten (Tibetan)

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