Overall: 52.6 x 118.1 x 17.8 cm (20 11/16 x 46 1/2 x 7 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 1967.37
Garuda is half man, half eagle, and the mount of Vishnu. His nose is beaklike, and his wings are carved in an exuberant foliate manner, like the swirling leaves that grow from the stem that arches across the middle of the panel. The vegetation yields female figures and jewels before it resolves itself into the heads of a cobra. Garuda is the natural enemy of the serpents, so he holds their tails in check. This decorative lintel is carved in the style of those made for a temple dedicated to the past kings of the Khmer territories. Derived from India’s use of purifying life-affirming imagery around doorways, this Garuda lintel has been rendered in a distinctively Khmer style.
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