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Buddha, from Pala. 8th-9th Centuries. London, British Museum.

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CollectionsArthur Llewellyn Basham
Title: Buddha, from Pala. 8th-9th Centuries. London, British Museum.
Author(s): Photographer: Arthur Llewellyn Basham
Keywords: Bengal & Bihar-- Sculpture - Bengal & Bihar, Buddhist;stone sculpture;slide set
Series/Report no.: Basham Collection
Description: This Buddha image is an example from the Pala Period of very late Buddhist art, dated between the 8th and 12th centuries and incorporating much of the Hindu's conception of Buddha into its style. Pala sculpture carried on the Classic Gupta style associated with Buddhism in its Late Mahayana (Great Vehicle) form, described by Rowland as Tantrism, a syncretic assimilation into Buddhism of many elements strictly Hindu in origin, such as the reliance on magic spells and rituals, and the worship of the Buddha as the Adi-Buddha, or creator, as a kind of Buddhist Brahma, which completely replaces the veneration of the person of the mortal Buddha. The style of this art, as exemplified in our illustration, is that which finds its way into Tibet and Nepal in the 8th and 9th centuries. We can tell at a glance that this Buddha has been derived from Guptan traditions but has undergone a slight provincialization that is quite evident in its somewhat crude form, stocky proportions, and transparent drapery.
Other Identifiers: ANUA 682-996


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