Reciting the Names of Manjushri
A Volume of the Manjushri Namasamgiti (Hymn to Manjushri, Bodhisattva of Wisdom)

Artist/maker unknown, Tibetan

Printed in Beijing, China, Asia

19th century

Colors on paper with silk

Text: 3 1/8 × 27 7/8 × 7 3/4 inches (7.9 × 70.8 × 19.7 cm) Cover (Top): 5/8 × 27 7/8 × 7 3/4 inches (1.6 × 70.8 × 19.7 cm) Cover (Bottom): 5/8 × 27 7/8 × 7 3/4 inches (1.6 × 70.8 × 19.7 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Gift of Charles H. Ludington from the George Crofts Collection, 1923

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Printing Buddhist books is an expensive but popular method of earning religious merit-the spiritual currency believed to increase one's chances for a better rebirth in the next lifetime. A wealthy, multi-lingual patron commissioned this large looseleaf book, annotated in Tibetan, Chinese, Manchurian, and Mongolian scripts. The red ink, possibly made from cinnabar, costs more than black. Golden yellow silk brocade, a color reserved in China for members of the imperial family, covers the bookends. Printing or donating lavish Buddhist texts like this one is one method for paying for monastic rituals.