Arts & Culture

Snake Goddess Manasa

12th century

Rubin Museum of Art
Rubin Museum of Art

Manasa, seated in a posture of royal ease, has a hood of seven snakes and an additional snake in her left hand. The fruit in her right hand and the vase underneath her foot are symbols of wealth and fertility. The ascetic to her right is her husband Jaratkaru, and to her left is a figure who is either her son, Astika, or her brother, Vasuki, the serpent king. Even the flying offering deities flanking the blossom finial at the top of the stele have snake bodies. A kneeling female worshipper and her offering are shown at the base.

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  • Title: Snake Goddess Manasa
  • Date Created: 12th century
  • Type: Sculpture
  • Rights: Rubin Museum of Art, C2005.36.2
  • Medium: Phyllite/Black stone
  • Place of Creation: Northeastern India
  • Exhibition History: Rubin Museum of Art, "Masterworks: Jewels of the Collection" (01/25/12 - 01/14/13; 03/11/11 - TBD), Michael C. Carlos Museum at Emory, exhibition and study purposes (11/02/09 - 05/31/10), Rubin Museum of Art, "Building the Collection: Acquisitions 2005-2006" (10/13/06 - 02/09/07)

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