Goddess, Possibly Nana, Seated on a Lion

Period:
Hepthalite or Turkic period
Date:
5th–6th century
Culture:
Afghanistan
Medium:
Stucco
Dimensions:
H. 9 15/16 in. (25.2 cm); W. 7 1/8 in. (18.1 cm); D. 3 3/4 in. (9.5 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Gift of Cynthia Hazen Polsky, 1986
Accession Number:
1986.506.12
Not on view
The Central Asian goddess Nana (Ardokhsho) seated on her lion mount is likely the source for this small icon from Buddhist Afghanistan. Nana in turn has close ties with a number of West Asian goddesses, notably the Near Eastern Anahita and the Mediterranean Tyche and Demeter. Here, the goddess is represented as benign, holding a cornucopia-like palmette. The imagery of Nana with a lion appears to have been transmitted principally via West Asian coinage.
Cynthia Hazen Polsky , New York (until 1986; donated to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Glimpses of the Silk Road: Central Asia in the First Millennium," 2002.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Mother India: The Goddess in Indian Painting," June 29, 2011–November 27, 2011.