Je Tsongkhapa, Mongolia, 18th century, Gilt bronze, 17 ¾ in. (45 cm.)
Tsongkhapa, also known as Je Rinpoche, was born in the Amdo region of Tibet in 1357. He was a highly respected Buddhist scholar and is credited as being the founder of the Gelug Buddhist sect, known as the “Yellow Hat” sect, one of the most powerful and widespread in the Buddhist religion. Revered as an incarnation of the bodhisattva Manjushri, he was reported to have seen and conversed with the deity from a young age. The current bronze example can be seen holding the stems of lotus flowers supporting a sword and book, which are the prime attributes of bodhisattva Manjushri.
Compare this powerful piece with a related gilt-bronze figure of Tsongkhapa, 18th century, illustrated in B.Lipton and N.D.Ragnubs, Treasures of Tibetan Art: Collections of the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art , p.70, no.22.
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