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0058 The Thousand Buddhas : vol.1
The Thousand Buddhas : vol.1 / Page 58 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000188
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the shoulder in small ringlets. The face is round with small features and oblique eyes cast downwards.

The dress is just as characteristically Indian. It consists of a short crimson lange fi flowered with blue rosettes and a transparent skirt of purple gauze which drapes the legs to the ankles. A fold of this crosses the body from the left shoulder. Round the neck is thrown a narrow stole, green spotted with white, which, where it passes over the right forearm, takes the form of a ` triple cord ', distinctively Hindu. The rich jewellery comprises heavy bracelets and anklets, serpentine armlets, ear-rings, and a double necklace from which hang green and blue lotus buds. A tiara of solid gold work, mounted with jewels, crowns the head.

Behind the figure appears a circular halo and behind the head a nimbus of elongated oval shape, both of variegated rings of colour. Above are seen the remains of a tasselled canopy waving with the lion's advance.

The lion strides to the left with his head turned back and the mouth wide open as if roaring. His mane is represented by conventional curls in different colours. Red spots are shown on breast, jowl, and back of legs. From his breast-band and crupper hang heavy tassels and ornaments similar to those above noted on Vaisravana's horse. The attendant who leads him by a red rope is shown as usually with very dark skin, coarse features, and bushy black hair, suggesting a negro. His dress consists of a narrow stole and a red and blue dhiiti-like skirt, tucked up at the knees. He wears also jewellery of a simple kind.

The design of the whole is harmonious and instinct with life, notwithstanding the hieratic conventions of the subject borrowed from distant India, and the workmanship is very careful.



IN this Plate we see a fine fragment of a silk painting once over life-size (Ch. liv. 003), reproduced on the scale of five-eighths and showing the upper part of the body of a Lokapâla. From the bow between his arm and body and the arrow held in his hand we can safely recognize him as Dhrtarâstra, the Guardian of the East. The figure, preserved only from the bearded jaws down to the hip-belt, is standing three-fourths to the left, with the left hand outspread at the breast and holding that World-Protector's special emblem, the arrow.

The King's flesh is painted a tawny brown, the finely drawn and slightly parted lips deep crimson. The sweeping beard, which must have given to the face a particularly strong if not fierce expression, is black. The equipment is very rich and painted in a series of vivid colours, scarlet, orange, blue, mauve, green, and black. Profuse jewel or semi-naturalistic floral ornaments, the latter, no doubt, copied from textile designs, all painted in the same bright colours, cover the discs of the corslet, straps, borders, pedestals of the jewelled shoulder bosses, &c.

Of special interest is the representation of the armour. On the shoulders and skirt it consists of oblong scales overlapping upwards, as very often elsewhere in our paintings and also in relievos.° But on the body it is represented by small interlacing black circles, on a white ground, manifestly intended for chain-armour. The coat of mail is finished on the top by a blue jewelled collar, probably of hard lacquered leather like the rest of the armour, lying back from the neck. White streamers falling on the breast from behind the ears show that the Lokapâla's head bore a tiara, not a helmet.

Though the surviving part is only a fragment, with edges broken all round, enough remains to show that with its vigorous drawing, fine workmanship, and brilliant colouring, the whole must have been a very effective picture.

80 For detailed references, cf. Serindia, p. 873 ; see also Ancient Khotan, i. pp. xvi, 252.