Enquiry about object: 6622
Thai Cast Silver Standing Buddha
Thailand 18th-19th century
height: 14.4cm, weight: 226g
private collection, London.
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The elegant Buddha has been cast in solid silver on a lotus pedestal mounted on a tiered, octagonal base. He is depicted standing with both hands held out with the palms facing the viewer (abhaya mudra). The fingers, like the image itself, are elongated. The ears are long and reach the shoulders, signifying the Buddha’s princely origins. The head has a low cranial protuberance. The robes are long and the back is completely flat.
The Buddha’s stance here has two interpretations. One is that he is ‘repelling the ocean.’ The other is that he is ‘preventing his relatives from fighting’. The former relates to a story that on a journey to the coast in India, a hermit unleashed a wall of water hoping to cause a flood and the Buddha with the power of meditation held back the flood waters. The latter derives from an argument over access to water between his father’s relative and those of his mother. The Buddha held up his hands, asking them which is more important – water or family peace?
The image here is solid cast. The base is hollow but the rest of the image is of solid silver. It is not made in the same way as many other small votive images with think silver hammered over a clay base.
The image is in fine condition. There are no restorations. The contours have been softened with age and handling.