This elephant's tusk is carved with detailed scenes from one of the lives of Buddha. It has an embossed silver mount.
It tells of the demon Punnaka and the sage Vidhura, an incarnation of the Buddha. It is taken from one of the 550 Jataka tales that illustrate the Buddha's path to enlightenment. It is called the Vidhura-Pandita Jataka.
Burmese ivory carving began in the 1860s in the court of King Mindon in Mandalay. Larger carvings of whole tusks became common in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Most of these carvings had a spiritual theme. Wealthy patrons paid for the ivory and donated the finished piece to a temple as a good deed.
Carved elephant's tusk
Burma (Union of Myanmar)
Elephant ivory, silver
Given by John Lang
Size/weight 1000mm x 115mm x 115mm 12360g