Votive Plaque (Sâccha) 11th C Burma, Pagan  

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Object-Votive Plaque (Sâccha)
Title-Depicting Buddha in Bhumisparsa Mudra
Date-11th century, reign of King Aniruddha
Techniques-Terracotta, deeply impressed from an intaglio mould
Place-Pagan, Burma
Dimensions-13.3 x 9.5 x 0.9 cm (5 1/4 x 3 3/4 x 3/8 in.)

Current Location- Harvard Art Museum/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Louis Sidney Thierry Memorial Fund, 1981.34
Museum number- 1981.34

This clay votive tablet, reportedly found at Pegu, Burma (now Myanmar), depicts the Buddha seated beneath the tower of the Mahabodhi temple at Bodh Gaya, in eastern India. He is seated in the Bhumisparsa Mudra pose with his right hand in the gesture of touching or witnessing the earth (bhumisparsa mudra), the gesture which more than any other represents the moment of his enlightenment.

He is flanked by seated figures of the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara on the left and right. The branches of the Bodhi tree, under which the Buddha achieved enlightenment, branch out from the central niche. In the upper part of the tablet are a number of small votive stupas (the funeral mound which housed the Buddha's relics and which became the symbol of his transcendental form and the primary Buddhist momument). At the bottom is the two lines of a Buddhist prayer in the devanagari script. Clay votive tablets of the Buddha, quotes from Buddhist texts, and divine figures represent a significant element of the archaeological record of early Buddhist sites in Pagan period.
I am not ready to describe the script and remain uncertain for the time being.

This entry was posted on Dec 5, 2009 at Saturday, December 05, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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