Feb 12, 2009

Pair of Guardian Kings (Niō)

Pair of Guardian Kings (Niō)


Part of a set. See all set records

Chestnut and cypress wood

Overall: 167.9 cm (66 1/8 in.)

Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. Fund 1972.158


Did you know?

This is one of a pair of guardian kings, or Nio. Their fierce expressions and postures indicate their protective function.


These wrathful protectors of Buddhism would have once stood within the sides of the main entrance gate to a temple. One has an open mouth that intones the sound ah, and symbolizes the beginning, or life.One has a closed mouth that intones the sound un, and symbolizes the end, or death.

See also
Japanese Art
Japanese Art
Type of artwork: 

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