Ascetic Holding a Skull

Ascetic Holding a Skull

c. 500

Gilt bronze

Overall: 19.4 cm (7 5/8 in.); Figure: 18.1 cm (7 1/8 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 1980.25


The figure holding the skull has been identified as Mrgasirsa, who sought Buddha’s teaching on how to
determine the karma and transmigration of the arhats. Mrgasirsa appears with Vasistha in some of the wall
paintings of the Mogao grottoes in Dunhuang.

See also
Chinese Art
Type of artwork: 
Gilt bronze

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