Asia Society Home Asia Society Home
  1 of 4  next >
enlarge image map of region
related objects additional views
Buddhist Painting from India, Nepal, and Tibet
Sculpture from Nepal
Sculpture from Kashmir
Buddhist Painting from India, Nepal, and Tibet
Sculpture from Tibet
Four Leaves from an Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita Manuscript
India, Bihar or Bengal; about 1151 - 1200
Ink and opaque watercolor on palm leaf
Each, H. 3 in. (7.6 cm); W. 17 1/4 in. (43.8 cm)
Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection of Asian Art
Before the use of paper became widespread in India, manuscripts were usually produced on leaves from a type of palm tree. The pages, originally stacked on top of each other, were strung together with a cord. This manuscript not only has images enhancing the central part of each leaf, but also has decoration at the ends of the leaves and surrounding the string holes. As is generally true in manuscripts of this type, the illustrations do not relate directly to the text, which is primarily a philosophical treatise on the nature of wisdom and compassion. The deities depicted are, from top to bottom, the bodhisattva Manjushri, the goddess Prajnaparamita, the goddess Tara, and a wrathful Dharmapala, literally a "protector of the Buddhist doctrine.
Home |  South Asia |  Himalaya |  Southeast Asia |  China & Mongolia |  Korea |  Japan
Treasures |  Guided Tour |  Timeline |  Search
About the Asia Society | The Rockefellers and the Asia Society | Site Map
Credits | ©Copyright 2007 Asia Society