Rondel with the Goddess Hariti

Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 235

The goddess Hariti is shown nursing a child and sitting on a throne flanked by lotuses and surmounted by auspicious geese (hamsa), the Buddha’s messengers. Stylistically this roundel can be related to first-century finds from the Taxila city of Sirkap, a dating that would make it one of the earliest known representations of Hariti. Buddhist texts tell us that Hariti originally stole and devoured children, but with the Buddha’s intervention she became their protector.

Rondel with the Goddess Hariti, Silver with gold foil, Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)

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