The discovery of a tooth of Ramapithecus in Shivalik hills Lumbini proves that the part of earth's surface now called Nepal was frequent by hominoids 8 to 14 million years ago, but the history of the region up until the early centuries BCE remains wholly un-reconstructed. Under the Licchavi rules 94th-C. 9th century AD), the kingdom may have extended far beyond the confines of the Kathmandu Vally, but as apolitical unite Nepal did not assume its present proportions until the late 18th century.
The name 'Nepal' was traditionally applied only to the Kathmandu Valley. It is clearly linked to the name of the Valley's most inhabitants, the Newars: one suggestion is that it is a combination of the Tibet-Burman word ne (cattle) and the Sanskrit word pale(keepers,gurdians), or or Ne ( the name of a mythical sage)with the same sanskrit word.
Kathmandu is the capital and largest municipality of Nepal.The city of Kathmandu is named after Kasthamandap temple, that stood in Durbar Square. In Sanskrit, Kāṣṭha means "wood" and Maṇḍap means "covered shelter". Kathmandu has an amazing architecture and a great selection of ancient historical art. There are lots of palaces and temples, which were mostly influenced by the Hindu religion.
Kathmandu is the core of Nepal's largest urban agglomeration, consisting of Lalipur, Kirtipur, Madhyapur Thimi, Bhaktapur and a number of smaller communities in the Kathmandu Valley. The city stand at an elevation of approximately 4,600 ft in the bowel-shaped Kathmandu Valley central Nepal. Historically, the Kathmandu Valley and adjoining areas were known as Nepal Mandala.
Architecture of Kathmandu
The ancient trade route between India and Tibet that passed through Kathmandu enabled a fusion of artistic and architectural traditions from other cultures to be amalgamated with local art and architecture. The monuments of Kathmandu City have been influenced over the centuries by Hindu and Buddhist religious practices. The architectural treasure of the Kathmandu valley has been categorized under the well-known seven groups of heritage monuments and buildings. The early medieval period, Kathmandu was Kanitipur, ‘city of light ‘ or ‘beautiful city’, or as Yangal or Yambu. At its center was a palace, and town was divided into upper and lower halves. In the old center of the city the Hanuma Dhaka area is a location of the most interesting Newer Bushiest monasteries, and Kesha, Mahal, a Rana Palace. The Hanuman Dhaka palace and the temple-filled square beside it together occupy an area of almost 10 acres at the center of old Kathmandu. The oldest buildings are the late 11th century Tana Bahal just off Makhani Tol to the north-east, and the 11th- or 12th- century Kasthamandapa in Maru Tol the south-west. No other building dates the region of Ratna Malla, the first king of independent Kathmandu, although places were erected here one after the other from the Licchavi period onward.
The religious art of Nepal and Kathmandu in particular consists of an iconic symbolism of the Mother Goddesses such as: Bhavani, Durga, Gaja-Lakshmi, Hariti-Sitala, Mahsishamardini, Saptamatrika (seven mother goddesses), and Sri-Lakshmi(wealth-goddess). From the 3rd century BC, apart from the Hindu gods and goddesses, Buddhist monuments from the awoken period (it is said that Ashoka visited Nepal in 250 BC) have embellished Nepal in general and the valley in particular. These art and architectural edifices encompass three major periods of evolution: the Licchavi or classical period (500 to 900 AD), the post-classical period (1000 to 1400 AD), with strong influence of the Palla art form; the Malla period (1400 onwards) that exhibited explicitly tantric influences coupled with the art of Tibetan Demonology.
A broad typology has been ascribed to the decorative designs and carvings created by the people of Nepal. These artists have maintained a blend of Hinduism and Buddhism. The typology, based on the type of material used are: stone art, metal art, wood art, terracotta art, and painting.
Kathmandu Durbar Square
Durbar Square is the generic name used to describe plazas and areas opposite the old royal palaces in Nepal. It consists of temples, idols, open courts, water fountains and more.The Durbar Square is one of the most popular tourist hotspots in Kathmandu, both for foreign and domestic tourists. It is also a favoured hangout place for locals. On Saturdays, more people, mainly children and students, visit the square than on other days of the week.
Several buildings in the Square collapsed due to a major earthquake on 25 April 2015 Durbar Square was surrounded with spectacular architecture and vividly showcases the skills of the Newar artists and craftsmen over several centuries.
Earthquake Destroyed Kathmandu’s Centuries-Old Landmarks.According to the Nepali news site Ekantipur, 80 percent of the temples located there were destroyed by the initial earthquake and it’s aftershocks: “Several temples, including Kasthamandap, Panchtale temple, the nine-storey Basantapur Durbar, the Dasa Avtar temple, Krishna Mandir and two dewals located behind the Shiva Parvati temple, were demolished by the quake.”