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On both ancient and modern Buddha statues in all cultures the earlobes are depicted as elongated and usually with a hole in them. In ancient India, men and women commonly wore ear plugs. Children’s ear lobes were pierced and a small clay cylinder was put in the holes. As the child grew, increasingly large cylinders were put in the lobes until they had stretched enough to accommodate plugs with diameters of up to 6 centimetres. Prince Siddhattha would have worn such ear plugs when he was a lay man and would have taken them off when he renounced the world, leaving his ear lobes elongated.
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