Exhibitions/ Art Object

The Siege of Ujjain and the Magic She-Ass: Folio from the Kalakacarya Section of a Kalpasutra Manuscript

16th century
India (Gujarat)
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Overall: 4 1/2 x 11 1/4 in. (11.5 x 28.6 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Daniel J. Slott, 1977
Accession Number:
Not on view
This scene depicts the city of Ujjayini (Ujjain), the capital of Malwa, in which the evil king Gardabhilla is seated while under siege by the armies of the Shahi princes. The ninety-six princes of the Saka clan crossed the Indus River from the northwest and entered western India at the invitation of the Jain monk Kalakacarya, whose sister, a nun, had been abducted by the king of Ujjain. The armies of the Saka clan attacked Ujjain, and a Shahi prince is shown slaying the magic she-ass that guarded the city gate, bringing defeat to the city. The evil king is spared but condemned to an endless cycle of miserable rebirths.
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