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Vajradhatumandala Mudras and Caryagttakosa,

being an anthology of iconographic hand gestures and Buddhist tantric songs for worship.

Stock Code 108951

Probably Tibet, late-18th century.

Original price £18,750.00 - Original price £18,750.00
Original price £0.00
£18,750.00 - £18,750.00
Current price £18,750.00
Buddhist mudras. The Sanskrit word mudras means 'mark' or 'gesture' and in the context of Buddhism, mudras are sacred symbolic hand gestures or positions that are used to evoke a certain state of mind. Although some mudras involve the entire body, most are specifically related to hands and fingers. The mudras illustrated in this manuscript are entirely dedicated to hand gestures for tantric songs of worship and also the use of hands with musical instruments and for ritual practices. A large illustration of the 'Chakrasamvara tantra', a Buddhist tantra of 'The Binding of the Wheels', opens the text and this represent a collection of sacred texts that are most commonly associated with Tibetan Buddhists, strongly suggesting a place of copying in Tibet.

The manuscript is copied in concertina form, commonly seen in Nepalese and Tibetan manuscripts, and is copied onto thick yellow card (formed of many layers of paper pasted together). The script is regular and suggestive of an experienced calligrapher and the illustrations are of a high standard for such a manuscript. Although the dating of these manuscripts is very challenging, this manuscript is most likely to have been produced sometime towards the late eighteenth- or early nineteenth-centuries. Complete Tibetan manuscripts like the present example, illustrated with over 250 illustrations of hand gestures, are very rarely seen on the open market.

Single codex in concertina form, decorated manuscript on yellow-stained paper, containing 60 leaves, text in Sanskrit and Newari (?) with over 250 illustrations of hand gestures including musical instruments and ritual practices, plus one large illustration of the Chakrasamvara tantra opening the text, complete in itself, 225 x 75 mm (depth 40 mm); text in single column, 7 lines black sanskrit, copied in a regular hand, most illustrations in columns of 5 per page, illustrations all in polychrome outlined in black, a few small smudges else very attractive condition; housed in contemporary blind-stamped and ruled leather over pasteboards with flaps, rubbed at extremities, in modern brown drop-box with black morocco label to spine, gilt.


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Vajradhatumandala Mudras and Caryagttakosa,


Stock code: 108951



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