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Page from an Indian zodiac manuscript: Figure Mounted on a Tiger (possibly Saturn)

Accession Number
1987/1.248

Title
Page from an Indian zodiac manuscript: Figure Mounted on a Tiger (possibly Saturn)

Artist(s)
Artist Unknown, India, Rajasthan, Jaipur School

Object Creation Date
circa 1840

Medium & Support
ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper

Dimensions
10 3/4 in x 7 7/8 in (27.3 cm x 20 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Professor Walter M. and Nesta R. Spink

Label copy
Gallery Rotation Winter 2013
Iconography series: Saturn, mounted on a tiger
India, Rajasthan, Jaipur School
circa 1840
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Gift of Professor Walter M. and Nesta R. Spink, 1987/1.248
In Sanskrit, Saturn is called Shani or Shanaishchara (the slow mover) because it takes thirty years for it to orbit the sun. Shani is also known for being strict and punishing those who follow the path of evil, betrayal, backstabbing, and unjust revenge. Typically he is depicted with dark skin, holding a bow and arrow, and riding upon or in a chariot pulled by a crow or vulture. As the protector of property Shani is able to repress the tendency of these birds to steal.
In this image Shani is seen mounted on the back of a tiger, the national animal of India and typically the vehicle of his sister, the Hindu goddess Durga. Shani also holds a white lotus, a scepter, and a Shani shankh (conch shell), used to appease him and invite his blessing.

; Label copy
Anonymous
Page from an Indian zodiac manuscript:
Figure Mounted on a Tiger (possibly Saturn)
India, Rajasthan, Jaipur school
ca. 1840
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Gift of Professor Walter M. and Nesta R. Spink, 1987/1.248

Subject matter
This is part of a series on Hindu deities and objects and animals associated with them. In this image Shani is seen mounted on the back of a tiger, typically the vehicle of his sister, the Hindu goddess Durga. Shani also holds a wheel/chakra, white lotus, scepter, and a Shani shankh (conch shell), used to appease him and invite his blessing.

Physical Description
Two figures, Shani and his tiger are depicted centrally in the image. The background is very simple with some grass tufts and a pond near the very bottom of the images.

Primary Object Classification
Painting

Primary Object Type
portrait

Collection Area
Asian

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
Hinduism
wheels (components)

4 Related Resources

Art of the Mughal Empire
(Part of 2 Learning Collections)
Celestial bodies
(Part of: Natural World)
Hindu Gods and Goddesses
(Part of 6 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

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