Historical period(s)
Kamakura period, 13th century
Wood with applied gold leaf
H x W x D: 35.5 × 12 × 10.5 cm (14 × 4 3/4 × 4 1/8 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Buddhist sculpture

Buddhism, cintamani, Japan, Kamakura period (1185 - 1333), varada mudra
Provenance research underway.

The Buddhist deity Jizo‚ (Kshitigarbha) is a bodhisattva, an enlightened being who alleviates suffering and provides spiritual guidance. Usually portrayed as a youthful Buddhist monk, Jizo‚ is worshiped in Japan as the savior of those condemned to hell and as the protector of women, children, and unborn souls. At sites all over Japan, small stone images of the deity, singly or in groups, serve to protect lost infants and children. This small wood sculpture, created for private devotion or for placement in a small shrine, is embellished with patterns of finely cut gold leaf applied directly to the surface.

Published References
  • Dr. John Alexander Pope, Thomas Lawton, Harold P. Stern. The Freer Gallery of Art. 2 vols., Washington and Tokyo, 1971-1972. cat. 94, vol. 2: p. 179.
  • Masterpieces of Chinese and Japanese Art: Freer Gallery of Art handbook. Washington, 1976. p. 89.
  • Paths to Perfection, Buddhist Art at the Freer/Sackler. Washington. pp. 102-103.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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