May 23, 2016

Rama and Lakshmana slay the demon giant Viradha, from Chapters 2 through 4 of the Aranya Kanda (Book of the Forest) of a Ramayana (Rama’s Journey)

Rama and Lakshmana slay the demon giant Viradha, from Chapters 2 through 4 of the Aranya Kanda (Book of the Forest) of a Ramayana (Rama’s Journey)

c. 1770

Gum tempera and gold on paper

Page: 21 x 29.8 cm (8 1/4 x 11 3/4 in.); Image: 19 x 28 cm (7 1/2 x 11 in.)

Purchase and partial gift from the Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection; Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund 2018.122

Did you know?

Rama is depicted with a green complexion in central and southern India.

Description

Viradha was once a celestial musician named Tumburu, who was cursed by Kubera, guardian king and god of wealth, to turn into a demon until he was killed by Rama. During their exile, when the hero Rama, his brother Lakshmana, and wife Sita were venturing in the Dandaka Forest, the demon appeared in front of the divine party and abducted Sita. Rama and Lakshmana slayed the demon and rescued Sita, and Viradha was freed from his curse.

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