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Creator Nationality: Asian; Southeast Asian; Indonesian; Javanese
Creator Dates/Places: Indonesia (Java)
Creator Name-CRT: Indonesia (Java)
Title: Top of a bell in the form of a demon king or guardian
View: Principal view
Creation Start Date: 1150
Creation End Date: 1233
Creation Date: Eastern Javanese period, ca. second half of 12th?early 13th century
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Materials and Techniques: bronze
Dimensions: H. 4 15/16 in. (12.5 cm)
This finial from a hanging bell takes the form of an unusually lively and finely modeled rakshasa?a demon king or guardian. He is depicted as a short, potbellied grimacing creature with fangs and large bulbous eyes and a serpent emerging from each armpit. A curved broad chopper is held in his right hand, and his left is placed behind the neck of a hapless victim with bound hands who is seated in front of him. The hair is pulled back and arranged in a loop to allow for the attachment of a suspension chain.
Ferocious creatures of this sort were popular participants in Javanese mythology and literature and appear often in the art of the Eastern Javanese period. Their association with bells is not uncommon.
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York
ID Number: 1987.142.17
Credit Line: Samuel Eilenberg Collection, Gift of Samuel Eilenberg, 1987
Copyright: Copyright ? 2002 The Metropolitan Museum of Art . All rights reserved.
AMICA ID: MMA_.1987.142.17
AMICA Library Year: 2002
Media Metadata Rights:
Copyright (c) 2002 The Metropolitan Museum of Art. All Rights Reserved
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