A Royal Fortress City
From the railing of a Buddhist stupa

Artist/maker unknown, Indian

Geography:
Made in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh, India, Asia

Date:
c. 1st - 2nd century BCE

Medium:
Sandstone

Dimensions:
17 1/4 × 9 × 7 3/4 inches (43.8 × 22.9 × 19.7 cm) Weight: 59 lb. (26.76 kg)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

* Gallery 229, Asian Art, second floor

Accession Number:
1957-122-1

Credit Line:
Gift of Stella Kramrisch, 1957

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Label:
This fragment belongs to a railing made up of pillars connected by horizontal bars. Fragments of such railings and their related gateways constitute the most plentiful type of sculpture dating to the reign of the Kushana dynasty (c. 50 - 320) in the Mathura region of northern India. Sculptors cut each element of the railing from a single block of stone and then fitted them together by tenons sliding into slots. In this piece, the holes for holding the crosspieces remain on both sides of the pillar. This kind of construction suggests that this railing form is based on an older wooden prototype. On the front of this pillar fragment is an extremely lively and naturalistic scene of charging buffalo. On the reverse is the body of a yakshi (female nature spirit).


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