Cultural Artifacts Exhibition Hall

2020-01-22 01:06 | Hits: 35

From: Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple Author: Office

Description of the relics from the three Pagodas

From 1978 to 1982, the largest-scale of the renovation to the three pagodas since Jiajing years of Ming Dynasty was funded by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage. During the process, 680 relics of various kinds were discovered on the top of Qianxun Pagoda (“heavenly palace” in the Buddhism), the base of the pagoda and the other parts. It boasted to be the most abundant and significant discovery in Nanzhao, Kingdom of Dali by far. Among the findings, there were various types of Buddhist statues and vajras made of gold, silver, bronze, iron, crystal, ceramics and wood, scriptures engraved on the silk, cloth and paper, carved metal pieces, relics from the Central Plains including bronze mirrors, porcelains, coins and stamps as well as the exquisite gold and silver ornaments, jewels and drugs.

Cultural relics are the witness of the history and the relics discovered from the three pagodas provide precious materials for the study of the history, politics, economy and culture of the Kingdom of Dali with their high values in the history, art and cultural relics. Besides providing sound evidence for the construction time of the pagodas, they also proved that the dominating religion during that period was Acarya of Vajrayana. Although Nanzhao Dali was a local authority dominated by the Bai and Yi nationalities, it never ceased to keep a close relationship with the Central Plains as well as India, Burma and the other countries in the southeast so as to learn from the advanced cultures from other regions and created its own material and spiritual wealth.

List of the relics

Silver slices of the figure

Silver, round, 9.2cm in diameter with a Buddha carved on it. The Buddha ahs spiral coil and between is eyebrows there are white hairs. It wears a loose and thin mantle, sitting in lotus position with its feet naked. The hands are in the Buddhist posture on the stomach. There are letters carved on the chest. It is a statue of Amitayus.

Gilding bronze letter

It was hidden in the cave to the west of the central base of the pagoda top. It is 32.5cm long, 12.5cm wide, 12cm high and weighs 7.25kg. The lid of the box is an insert-type with a roll of cotton-packed three pieces of cotton with scriptures, curses and patterns of datura on them. Outside of it there are some anti-corrosion drugs such as rosin and sandalwood.

Golden vines

It is 6.2cm in diameter and was decorated with a pair of golden flat round conchos. Around it are petal-like flowers woven with two strands of golden wire. The vines are joined with two thin round pieces with the hollow cut flower in the middle. It is very exquisite. From its pattern we belive it is an ornament on the garland or necklace used to greet the VIP in India or Burma.

Statues of Asura and Ucchusma

Statue of Asura: silver figure on a wood carving lotus base. It is 5cm high with three heads and six arms. It wears a crown, a necklace and shawl. It has a slim waist, sitting in the lotus position. It holds a jar in one of the left hand, a seal in another hand and mirror in the third left hand. In his three right hands there are willow branch, a pestle and a mirror.

Statue of Ucchusma: silver and 17.5cm high, the statue has one face and two arms. The hairs flow to the sky like flame. It wears a skull with pestles in both of the two hands. It is naked but with ribbons circling around the body. There is a snake twining the limbs.

Gilding bronze statue of Ratnasambhava

Gilding bronze statue, 8.3cm high, the figure has the hair bound with pearls decorating the ears. It wears a long mantle with smooth lines.

Golden statue of Aksobhya

Golden statue of 8.5cm in height. The hair was bound with pearls decorating the ears. It wears a multi-wrinkle mantle, sitting in the lotus position. The hands were placed with the Buddhist posture. (right hand on the knee and left hand on the stomach with the palm facing out)

The 6cm high statue is golden and wears a long mantle.

Gilding bronze statue of Vairokana

The 8.3cm high statue is gilding silver. It has a high mound of flesh on its forehead and the cheek is square-round. The eyebrows and eyes are painted in black. It wears a cassock with the shoulder uncovered. With the feet naked, it sits in the lotus position and the hands are placed with the Buddhist posture of teaching.

Gilding bronze statue of Amoghavajra

Gilding bronze, 4,5cm in height, the figure raises its right hand with two fingers pointing horizontally. The left hand is placed on the stomach with the palm to the outside.The workmanship is rough.

Golden Acarya Statue

It is golden statue, 28cm high and 1115g in weight. On the back there is hollow cut pattern of the silver flame-like back light. The figure has a high-rise bun with a Buddhist crown on the head. Around the bun there is a tow which hangs down in various strands. The figure is naked in the upper body with a seal of goddess in the hand. It wears a pearl necklace, an armlet and a wristlet. It is a girdling standing statue with long dress. The waist belt is decorated with flower-shape button. The feet are naked with two strokes under them. 

Gilding bronze crown with beads embedded

9.5cm in diameter and 6.5cm in height, the middle part of the crown is a crystal bead cupped by two-layer lotus petals. The bead is 2cm in diameter with its four sides decorated with hollow cut coiling grass pattern and it is embedded with crystal beads.

Gilding silver statue embedded with beads of Redpoll

Its name in Sanskrit is Garuda which is 18.5cm high and 125 in weight. It looks like it is extending the wings and holding its head high. With a feather crown on its head and the feathers folded like flame, tt perches on a lotus base. On the feather of its tail, there are 5 crystal beads embedded. The statue is collected in a wooden pennant and is the only statue of the redpoll in the three pagodas.

Golden statue of Acarya Avalokitesvara inside the carved lacquer niche

The statue in the niche is 8.5cm high. The figure has high-rise topknot with a Buddhist crown on the head with tows circling around the topknot and drooping down in various strands. Its upper body is naked. It holds a seal of the Goddess in its hand, a pearl necklace on the neck, a armlet and wristlet on the arm. Its waist is slim and it stands with a long dress. The waist belt is decorated with flower-shape button. Its feet are naked and under the feet is a girdling lotus base. The back light is also golden with flame pattern covering it and hollow cut honeysuckle pattern inside it. The niche is 10.8cm in height, 5.3cm in the bottom length and 2.7cm in width. It is purple red and very light. The top of it is decorated with lotus pearls and the door of the niche is ogive with the edges decorated with the pattern of a string of beads. The base is a sumeru base.

Crystal statue of Akasobhya

The crystal statue is 6.5cm high with naked feet. It wears a cassock with the shoulder uncovered. The figure has a high nose, slim waist. Its lips and the hair were painted with red.

Gilding bronze statue of Akasobhya

Gilding bronze, 12cm high, the figure has spiral coil, wearing a cassock with the shoulder uncovered with smooth smocking.

Gilding bronze, 4.2cm high, the figure sits on a girdling lotus base with letters on the back.

Silver statue of Akasobhya

Silver, 9cm high, the figure looks delicate with a box in its left hand.

Silver, 6cm high.

Silver, 4.2cm high, the figure wears a cassock with the shoulder uncovered and stands on the lotus base. On its back there is a flame light, but the workmanship is a little rough.

Silver statue of the Vairocana

One is 8.6cm high with bonded hair and earrings as well as the peals decorating the hair. It wears a long robe with smooth lines.

One is 8cm high with white soft hair between its eyebrows. On the left side of the statue there are characters cut in relief as “made for Gao Xianglian” and on the back there are the incised characters with the same content. On the back of its head, there is a cast shape like the Chinese character “ren”.

Gilding silver round box with carved patterns

It is silver-made, 4cm in diameter and 12cm in height. The box looks like a lotus with 6 petals. On the outside of the box was carved a pair of mandarin ducks standing on two lotuses. They stand there with their neck tangled and with a branch in the mouth. On the bottom of the box were carved hexagonal tangling branches in which there is a flower. On both sides of the box the pattern of lotus were decorated. 

Golden models of pagoda

The model is golden which is 3.8cm high and 5g in weight. It is a square single-storey pagoda. The top of the pagoda is lid-like and was decorated with white crystal bead. The body and the base of the pagoda are boxes with a lotus-like seat with 2 crystal beads in it originally.

Gilding Models of pagoda

One of the models was made in the gilding silver and its top was made to the shape of pavilion. There is a silvering copper Buddha statue respectively on the four doors of each direction. And the base is lotus-like Sumera Base.

Another one is 12cm high 150g model made in gilding copper. It is a six-storey double-eave square pagoda and the decoration of the top consists of the top, lid, wheel and lotus base. It is similar to Thousand-xun Pagoda in their decoration of the top. The inner side of the door was smeared with colors and the base is cupped with two coiling clouds.

Silver Statue of Avalokitesvara on Namo Single Coast

The silver statue is 1340g in weight and boasts to be the biggest one among the statues of Avalokitesvarain the pagodas. The statue was dressed with a five-jewelry crown on his its head, a feather-like tippet on his shoulder, a corsage on its upper body and a dress on its lower body. A pearl necklace is around it, circling it around its chest, legs and hanging down the shoulder and two arms. It holds a willow branch in its right hand and a lotus-like jar in its left hand.

Statue of Water-Moon Avalokitesvara

It is a jade carving and 16.2cm high. On the back of it there is a silver flame and honeysuckle pattern with back light. It poses in a relaxing way with a pearl necklace and shawl. On the base there is a “shan”-shape hollow cut pattern on which there is a saddle-shaped seat. The Buddha carved and its base are separated with a bamboo stick connecting them.


Category: Travel Guide
Editor: Apple 2020-01-22 01:14