Birth of the Buddha Shakyamuni
ca. 2nd century
Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)
H. 6 15/16 in. (16 cm); W. 7 3/4 in. (19.7 cm)
Gift of Steven Kossak, The Kronos Collections, 1987
This panel, together with the one showing Maya's dream (1976.402), was part of a larger set that would have sequentially encircled the drum of a small stupa to recount the life of the Buddha. Here, Maya reaches up to grasp a branch of a tree, much like earlier representations of yakshis (female nature deities), and miraculously gives birth to the Buddha out of her right side.
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