Manuscript cover decorated with three Buddhas seated in meditation attitude
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ABM 018

 Code: ABM 018

  Country: Tibet

  Style: Nepalese School

  Date: 1200 - 1300

  Dimensions in cm WxHxD: 69.5 x 21.5 x 1.5

  Materials: Gilt copper

Gilt Copper Manuscript Cover (pustakastha) decorated with three Buddhas seated in meditation attitude (samadhi)

The inner rectangular section for this manuscript cover is decorated with tree Buddha images seated in meditation attitude (samadhi )inside aureoles interspersed with circular lotus fowerheads admist scrollwork. The outer section is decorated with a row of petals, a string of pearls, and a border of rays.
 
Buddha images clad in monastic robes in the meditation attitude usually represent as a group of three images Manusibuddhas, i.e. huma or mortal Buddhas of the nirmanakaya. However, depending on the individual disposition of the worshipper, a group of three images can have more than one meaning. Such a group may be contemplated as the "Buddhas of the Three Times", namely Kasyapa (past), Shakyamuni (present), and Maitreya (future). A group of three Buddha images may also be associated with the Mahayanist perception of the three fold essence of the Buddhas, the "three bodies" (trikaya), known as dharmakaya, sambhogakayaand nirmanakaya (or rupakaya). Another association may be the three-fold nature of Buddhism, namely buddha, dharma, and sangha.
 
(Formerly von Schroeder Coll. 2004-05)

Christie's, 2004. New York. Indian and Southeast Asian Art. Christie's. 23 September, lot 96: Nepal. Circa 13th century - References to manuscript covers of the same collection

Grönbold, Günter, 1991. Tibetische Buchdeckel, [Austellengskatalog Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, München]. München: Bayerische Stadtsbibliothek. pp. 86-87, pl. 32: Südtibet oder Nepal, ca. 16/17. Jh. - References to manuscript covers of the same collection

Weldon, David, 1996. Early Tibetan Manuscript Covers, 12th–15th Century, [catalogue of the sale exhibition held at Barbara Mathes Gallery, New York, 1996]. London: Anna Maria Rossi & Fabio Rossi Publ.. References to manuscript covers in general