Tibet, Rakta Yamari

Part of a set of deities known as Yamantaka (the enemy of Yama) – an emanation of Manjushri, Rakta Yamari is a meditational deity with a human face, 2 arms and 2 legs. Normally represented with his consort, he is much larger than hers and often has an oversized head.  Like Yama, he stands on a victim over a bull or on a bull alone. For this reason, they are often confused (and mis-labelled by museums or auction houses). In fact, two of the pictures below were previously inserted in the Yama and Yami post, but Yama always has a buffalo head.

12th c., Tibet, Rakta Yamari, Tibetan trad., gilt cop., 19 cm, Alain Bordier

12th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari and consort (Vajravetali), gilt copper, at the Fondation Alain Bordier (Switzerland).

14th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper alloy and pigment, photo by Christie's.

14th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, bronze and pigment, photo by Christie’s.

He holds a sword in his right hand and a skull cup in the other. His face and her body are painted with cold gold, there is red pigment in his hair and blue lapis lazuli powder in hers.

15th century, Tibet, Yama and Yami, gilt copper alloy, at the Patan Museum (Nepal).

15th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper alloy, at the Patan Museum (Nepal).

15th century, Tibet, Yama and Yami, gilt copper alloy, photo by Christie's.

15th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper alloy, photo by Christie’s.

Both previously posted as Yama and Yami by mistake.

15th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper with pigment, turquoise and silver inlay, private collection.

15th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper, iron, silver, pigment, turquoise, private collection.

He is holding a flaming sword and a skull cup. She is holding a vajra and a skull cup and is wearing belt and has an animal skin thrown around her thighs. Their hair has been painted with red pigment.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper alloy and turquoise inlay, private collection.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Rakta Yamari, gilt copper alloy and stone inlay, private collection.

16th century, gilt copper, cold gold and pigment, at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhassa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

16th century, gilt copper, cold gold and pigment, at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhassa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

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