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For use in a procession

Artist/maker unknown, Indian

Made in Tamil Nadu, India, Asia

Medieval Period (c. 600 - c. 1300)

c. 975

Copper alloy

32 × 14 3/4 × 10 inches (81.3 × 37.5 × 25.4 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

* Gallery 324, Asian Art, third floor (Caplan Gallery)

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Purchased with the W. P. Wilstach Fund, the John D. McIlhenny Fund, and with funds contributed by the Women's Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in honor of their 100th anniversary, 1982

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Rama—great hero, ideal king, and one of the ten avatars of the god Vishnu—is the protagonist of the Ramayana, a popular Hindu religious text. In this processional image, Rama’s hands are placed to hold a bow (now missing); it is with a bow and arrow that he kills his nemesis, the evil demon king Ravana. The temple hall in which this sculpture stands incorporates many images of Rama, including eight relief slabs (placed around the inside of the hall just below the ceiling) that once formed part of a much larger series that tells the full story of the Ramayana.

* Works in the collection are moved off view for many different reasons. Although gallery locations on the website are updated regularly, there is no guarantee that this object will be on display on the day of your visit.