Nepal, a few bodhisattvas

9th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Rossi&Rossi.

9th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Rossi&Rossi.

This unidentified character holds three jewels in the palm of his right hand and a (jewelled?) lasso or tape in the other. He wears a low three-leaf tiara, a chignon adornment, one large hoop and one large floral earring that matches his belt, a bulky necklace, foliate armbands, beaded bracelets, a sacred cord that passes under his sash. There is a flaming halo attached to his back.

9th-10th century, Nepal, Vajrabodhisattva, copper with cold gold and pigments, preserved in Tibet, photo by Carlo Cristi.

9th-10th century, Nepal, Vajrabodhisattva, copper with cold gold and pigments, preserved in Tibet, photo by Carlo Cristi.

Seated on a double-lotus base with broad petals, his legs in the vajra position, both hands extended to hold two (missing) vajras, this bodhisattva wears a three-panel crown with bows, ribbon and an effigy of Akshobhya at the front, some jewellery including large floral earrings and flaming jewel armbands, an adornment for his chignon with another effigy of Akshobhya. The artist has made incisions to indicate a sash  across his chest, to decorate the broad hem of his long lower garment, and to make the lotus petals on the pedestal more life-like. Being worshipped in Tibet, the image has been painted with cold gold and pigments on the face and lapis lazuli powder on the hair.

10th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, copper with traces of gilding, at the Norton Simon Museum (USA).

10th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, copper with traces of gilding, at the Norton Simon Museum (USA).

This bodhisattva seated in a relaxed position on a Thakuri-style pedestal, doing the gesture of supreme generosity with his right hand and holding the stem of what may be a blue lotus in his left hand, could be Manjushri. He wears the three-tooth pendant associated with him (but not exclusively), together with a tripartite crown, some floral earrings and matching armbands.

11th century, Nepal, Bodhisattva, gilt copper alloy, same as before.

11th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, gilt copper alloy, same as before.

This may also be Manjushri, with a blue lotus in his left hand and a miniature manuscript in the other, displaying the gesture of supreme generosity.

Undated, Nepal, Bodhisattva, copper alloy, at the Nicholas Roerich Museum, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

Undated (Transitional period?), Nepal, bodhisattva, copper alloy, at the Nicholas Roerich Museum, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

This character, adorned with a tall three-panel crown and beaded jewellery, holds an object (manuscript?) in his left hand and does the varada mudra with the other. He is seated on a three-legged base not uncommon in Nepal.

12th century, Nepal, Bodhisattva, gilt copper alloy, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (USA).

12th century, Nepal, bodhisattva, gilt copper alloy, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (USA).

This Thakuri-style sculpture depicts a bodhisattva with a triratna (three flaming jewels) in his left hand. He does the tarjani mudra (warding off evil) with the other. The absence of a crown reveals a foliate hair adornment. He wears a three-tooth pendant, floral earrings, big armbands and a beaded sacred thread. There is a broad sash across his chest, decorated with incisions, like his dhoti.

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