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painting / banner / 繪畫 / 幡

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1919,0101,0.93

  • Description

    A banner showing the seven treasures of the cakravartin (world sovereign): the golden wheel, jewel, coffer, general, lady, elephant and horse. Seven blank carotuches. Painted in ink and colours on silk.

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 9thC
  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 62.5 centimetres
    • Width: 20 centimetres
  • Curator's comments

    This banner follows a format similar to those depicting events from the Life, and, as we have seen (Pl.32), the Seven Treasures are also on occasion shown alongside those events. As defined by Alice Getty (1962,p.194), the Seven Treasures are:
    1, the golden wheel believed to fall from heaven on the investiture of a ‘Wheel King’,symbol of Perfection of the Law; 2, a precious stone (māni),symbol of the accomplishment of wishes; 3, a royal consort (a noblewoman) symbolizes the ‘calming caress’; 4, the best horse (a white horse), symbol of prompt success in the acquisition of the qualities of the Buddha; 5, the best elephant, as bearer of 84,000 sacred books, symbolizes the infinite propagation of the religion; 6, the best treasurer (civil offcer), who by his generosity removes poverty, and by his justice assures the well-being of people; 7, the best leader (military chief), who with his sword of wisdom repels the enemies.
    As can be seen from the paintings, the content as the order may vary slightly. Here, as in the Pelliot painting (Bannières, No.6), the Treasurer is replaced by a rectangular coffer; in Pl.32 both the Treasurer and the Coffer are shown, and the precious jewel is not separately represented, so that the total is still seven. It almost seems that the Chinese predilection for symmetry is the decisive factor, especially in the Pelliot painting where the Wheel is flanked by the Consort and the General, then by the Elephant and the Horse, and finally by the Coffer and the Jewel.
    seven blank cartouches accompany the treasures, which are set in a minimal landscape. The style is quite similar to that of Pls.36, 37 and 39.此幡與我們所見的圖32中的那些描寫事件的幡採用相似的形式。七寶也不時出現在那些事件的旁邊,根據Alice Getty的定義(1962,p.194),七寶是:
    1.金輪寶,被認爲是從天堂裏“輪王”授權儀式上墜落下來的,象征著法律的完美。
    2.神珠寶,象征著完成願望。
    3.玉女寶(以貴婦人形象表示),象徵寧靜的愛撫。
    4.白馬寶,代表快速成佛。
    5.白象寶,因爲馱著84000冊宗教書籍,象征著無窮的宗教傳播。
    6.主藏臣寶(以文官形象出現),以他的慷慨消除貧困,用他的公正確保人們的幸福平安。
    7.主兵臣寶(以將軍形象出現),用他的智慧之劍擊退敵人。
    象畫中可以看見的那樣,內容和順序可能會有稍微的變化。這裏,象在伯希和畫中一樣,主藏臣寶被換成了一個矩形箱子。另外,圖32中文官和矩形箱子同時出現,並且珍貴的珠寶不是單獨的表現,所以總數仍然是七。好像中國人對對稱的偏好是決定性因素,尤其是在伯希和畫中,那裏輪子被放在武將(主兵臣寶)和貴婦人(玉女寶)的側邊,接著是白馬寶和象寶,最後是矩形箱子和珠寶。
    七個題箋伴隨著珠寶,都没有文字。這些珠寶放置在非常粗略的山水畫中。這種風格與圖36、39的幡近似。

    More 

  • Bibliography

    • Stein 1921a p.1032; vol.IV, pl.LXXV bibliographic details
    • Whitfield 1982 pl.40 bibliographic details
  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1919

  • Acquisition notes

    For full acquisition history, see 1919,0101,0.1.

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    1919,0101,0.93

  • Additional IDs

    • Ch.xxvi.a.004 (Stein no.)
Front
A banner showing the seven treasures of the cakravartin (world sovereign): the golden wheel, jewel, coffer, general, lady, elephant and horse. Seven blank carotuches. Ink and colours on silk.

Front A banner showing the seven treasures of the cakravartin (world sovereign): the golden wheel, jewel, coffer, general, lady, elephant and horse. Seven blank carotuches. Ink and colours on silk.

Image description

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