Embroidery from India and Pakistan, £10.99
Height: 6.350 cm
Asia OA 1872.7-1.67
Room 33: Asia
Garuda in anjalimudra
From Orissa, eastern India, 13th century AD
The hawk mount of Vishnu
Many Hindu deities have a vehicle or
vahana on which they
Garuda was originally a solar deity and Vishnu's devoted servant. This image depicts him kneeling with the palms of his hands pressed together in adoration (anjalimudra). Such an image would have been placed in the outer courtyard of a temple, facing towards the main shrine with its image of Vishnu.
Garuda is the enemy of snakes or nagas. Small snakes appear wrapped around this sculpture's wrists, upper arms and shins, and in his earrings and hair.
T. R. Blurton, Hindu art (London, The British Museum Press, 1992)