only a small chip to the rectangular base, this marble statue found near the Beijin
area in the early 90s' is in an excellent state of preservation, which makes it
difficult to identify its exact age. Nevertheless, his close proximity and his
close resemblance to the guardians of the 16th century Ming tomb in Changping
Xian, Hebei province verifies his disposition. In most likelihood he was designed
as a guardian for the tomb of an imperial family member, or a sovereign in the
late Ming Dynasty.
standing legs apart, this commanding Chinese general is dressed in military armor
detailed with scale patterns, a monster mask, and a scarf halo that indicates
the protective and ritual aspects of his functions. Furthermore, the long sceptor
laid across his forearms, and his joining hands in adoration gesture, verifies
that he is a Dharmapala. Although his calmly contemplative expression differs
from the ferocious Dharmapalas standing guard in front of Buddhist temple gates,
we surmise that he was guardian of the inner chamber, a protected area where centuries
can passed with no disturbances until excavated.
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