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Image of Zhenwu
Item No. 19416

18th - 19th Century, Buddhist, China
Wood with Pigmentation
15" x 6" x 6"
( 38.1 x 15.24 x 15.24 cm)
(H x W x D)

This statue of Zhenwu (Perfecred Warrior)is an excellent example of small scale images made for personal devotion on home altars. The image is finely carved and contains most of the red pigment and traces of gilt with which it was originally covered. As one of the most revered deities in the Taoist pantheon, he sits proudly on a backless chair set on a three tied pedestal in military garb of flared sleeves at his elbows and decorative maille armour on his arms and upper legs, and a tao tieh on his belt. His left hand is clenched and his right appears to be positioned to have held a shafted weapon. His head is framed with two circles formed by his celestial scarves.

Although Zenwu's bare feet traditionally are placed on a snake encircling a tortoise, the artist has taken some liberties with this image, placing his left foot on a tortoise and his right on a snake. Characteristic of Zenwu, his hair extends down his back, and in this case is v shaped and extends to his waist

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