Kammavacha: Buddhist Ordination Text

Location: not on view
You can copy, modify, and distribute this work, all without asking permission. Learn more about CMA's Open Access Initiative.

Download, Print and Share

Did You Know?

The Pali text of this manuscript is written in Burmese square script, which is also known as "tamarind seed script."


In premodern Burma, lay people commissioned lavishly ornamented manuscripts for ceremonial occasions, when officiants would read aloud from the text. Written in black lacquer, the text is in the language of Pali written in a Burmese script. It contains ordination rites and procedures for monastic ceremonies.

The second to last page is covered with intricately drawn, winged celestial beings (nats) in gestures of praise. They fly amid intertwining vegetation—denoting bounty—that grows from serpentine forms that refer to rain clouds. Lionlike forms inhabit the space with them. The top and bottom covers are equally ornamented with jeweled floral patterning.
Kammavacha: Buddhist Ordination Text

Kammavacha: Buddhist Ordination Text


Myanmar (Burma)

Visually Similar Artworks

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@clevelandart.org.

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.