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architecture

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    Franks.2544

  • Description

    Earthenware architecural element with green, yellow, brown and cream glazes. Part (lower section) of a pair (see also BM Franks. 921). This architectural elements is moulded and carved. It shows a double band of lotus petals with 'ruyi' cloud feet suggested in yellow. The lead glaze has dripped over the edges.

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  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 1412-1431 (circa)
  • Production place

  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 18.5 centimetres
    • Width: 17 centimetres (max)
    • Diameter: 7 centimetres
  • Curator's comments

    Harrison-Hall 2001:
    This type of lotus-petal base with beading is found in Sino-Tibetan Buddhist sculpture of the Yongle era. For example, a Yongle mark and period gilt-bronze image of the historical Buddha Sakyamuni, shown in meditative posture, seated on a similar double lotus-petal throne, is in the British Museum (BM 1980.0410.4). The Yongle emperor maintained good diplomatic relations with the Tibetans and invited Tibetan religious leaders including Halima to court to perform religious services for his deceased parents, for example, in 1407.
    These architectural elements were probably made for the base section of an ornamental gate at the 'Da Bao'en si', Nanjing, and may be compared to a reconstruction of the main gate illustrated in a recent exhibition catalogue. Construction of the 'Da Bao'en si' temple complex began in the Yongle reign in 1412 and was completed in the Xuande era in 1431. Franks suggests that the spheres and flame represent the 'san zhi' or 'three moral excellences' of Buddha.

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  • Bibliography

    • Harrison-Hall 2001 18:13 bibliographic details
  • Location

    Not on display

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    Franks.2544

Earthenware architecural element moulded and carved showing a double band of lotus petals with ruyi cloud feet suggeted in yellow. The lead glaze has dripped over the edges.

Earthenware architecural element moulded and carved showing a double band of lotus petals with ruyi cloud feet suggeted in yellow. The lead glaze has dripped over the edges.

Image description

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Object reference number: RRC1589

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