Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Door Guardian (Dvarapala)

ca. 4th century
Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)
H. 18 in. (45.7 cm); W. 10 3/4 in. (27.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Friends of Asian Art Gifts, 1991
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 236
Similar armored guardian figures were found flanking a doorway of a monastery at the Gandharan site of Thareli; clearly, this example also had significance as a protective deity. It is interesting that the monks chose to integrate such non-Buddhist deities into the embellishment of their monastic residences. The appearance of such protectors probably can be linked to the growing importance of the war god Skanda in the late Gandharan tradition.
[ Doris Wiener Gallery , New York, by 1991; sold 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. "The Pala-Sena Period," 2007.

Related Objects

Seated Buddha

Date: 1st to mid-2nd century Medium: Bronze with traces of gold leaf Accession: 2003.593.1 On view in:Gallery 235

Standing Bodhisattva Maitreya (Buddha of the Future)

Date: ca. 3rd century Medium: Gray schist Accession: 1991.75 On view in:Gallery 235

Monumental Head of Buddha

Date: 4th–5th century Medium: Stucco Accession: 1985.388 On view in:Gallery 236

Head of Buddha

Date: ca. 4th century Medium: Stucco with traces of paint Accession: 13.96.4 On view in:Gallery 236

Bust of a Bodhisattva

Date: ca. 4th–5th century Medium: Schist Accession: 42.25.15 On view in:Not on view