The pillars of Ashoka are a series of columns implanted throughout the Indian subcontinent. These pillar were inscribed by the Mauryan king Ashoka during his reign in the 3rd century BCE. Originally, there must have been several pillars erected but only few survive with inscriptions. Many are preserved in a modified and incomplete state.
These pillars were between forty and fifty feet in height, and weighing up to fifty tons each, all the pillars were quarried at Chunar, just south of Varanasi and dragged, sometimes hundreds of miles, to where they were erected.Alexander Cunningham, one of the first to study the inscriptions on the pillars, remarks that they were Prakrits and were also in Brahmi script.