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An image of Votive stupa with base by

Ancient Gandhara, Pakistan

Votive stupa with base
Place of origin
Ancient GandharaPakistan
Kushan period mid 1st century - early 5th century → India
1st century
Media category
Materials used

23.0 x 11.9 cm overall:

a - lid; 20 x 8.3 cm

b - base; 3.1 x 11.9 cm

Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Bequest of Alex Biancardi 2000
Accession number
Not on display
Further information

The stupa is probably the most revered symbol in Buddhism. Its shape is based on the memorial mound raised over the mortal remains of the Buddha Shakyamuni. For the early Buddhists, the stupa was a symbol both of the Buddha's Parinirvana (extinction) and of the faith itself. Images of the stupa abound in Buddhist art, in media as diverse as stone, bronze, crystal and gold. This formally proportioned stupa is typical in construction: a base, a hemispherical body surmounted by a 'harmika' (a square structure derived from the fenced enclosures of early shrines), and crowned by a multi-tiered umbrella.

The Asian Collections, AGNSW, 2003, pg.26.

Bibliography (1)

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Buddhist Art', Sydney, 2003, 26 (colour illus.).