Inventory no.: 583

583. Bronze Hindu Nandi Offering Dish, India


Bronze Offering Dish (Katora) with a Nandi Stand


18th-19th century

height: 17.4cm; diameter of tray: 13.2cm

This offering dish, in the form of a taza mounted on the back of nandi, the sacred bull that is the mount or vahana of Shiva, would have been used to place offerings (sweetmeats, flowers and so on) before images of Shiva. Nandi sits on a platform raised on four legs. The image is finely cast with excellent detail such as cowbells, a ceremonial blanket and well-formed hooves.

Nandi images often are placed at the entrance of Shiva temples. They have long been associated with fertility, illustrated by the custom of worshippers touching such image’s testicles as they file past as they enter the temple, particularly if they wish to expand their family. This image appears designed to promote fertility – it too has prominent testicles beneath a swishing tail.

Inventory no.: 583


See items 233 and


for related pieces.