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A3 Amitayus, 11.4., China, 18th Century gilt copper alloy.

Amitayus is the Buddha of Eternal Life and as such is one of the most popular deities in Tibet, China and Japan.

Here Amitayus is depicted in his most frequently encountered form, wearing a crown and elaborate bodhisattva ornaments. He is seated with his hands resting palm up in his lap, the mudra of meditation.

In Tibet Amitayus would be shown with the vase of ambrosia or the elixir of eternal life resting on his upturned palms. In China as in this instance the vase is often omitted.

Sculptures of Amitayus of similar design to this were made in large numbers in China for those practicing the Tibetan form of Buddhism. They varied considerably in quality. For a small sculpture of this type, this example is relatively crisply modelled and well gilded.
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