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Indian Marble Sculpture of the Sacred Cow

Indian Marble Sculpture of the Sacred Cow

Regular price $388.00
Regular price Sale price $388.00
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India, mid. 19th to early 20th century.

Lovely aged marble cow figure. In Hinduism, cows are thought to be sacred, or deeply respected. In ancient Hindu texts, the cow appears as Kāmadhenu, or the divine cow, which fulfils all desires. Its horns symbolize the gods, its four legs, the ancient Hindu scriptures or the "Vedas" and its udder, the four objectives of life, including material wealth, desire, salvation, and righteousness. The cow has also been associated with other deities, such notable Shiva (whose steed is a bull, Nandi), Indra (closely associated with Kāmadhenu), Krishna (a cowherd in his youth). Cows are seen as a "caregiver" or maternal figure. One Hindu goddess, Bhoomi, is usually shown in the form of a cow. She represents the Earth. Hindus who eat meat will avoid eating beef. In the Hindu tradition, cows are honored, garlanded and given special feedings at festivals all over India. One is the annual Gopastami festival, dedicated to Krishna and cows. 

Charming sacred cow with small calf is hand-carved from white marble. The artist has rendered the cow’s anatomy with bold and powerful lines, that conveys Kāmadhenu's divine status. Traces of red and gold, particularly on the base suggest that the sculpture was once extensively polychromed. The scale of the carving indicates that it was used for private devotion, perhaps in a household shrine. Good condition. Age-related wear and ceremonial use over many years. Polished, smooth patina. Traces of libations and sacrifical offerings. Size approx. 11,5cm x 4,9cm x 10,5cm. 

Provenance: Dutch private collection

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