Gandharan Buddha

I found this image on the Metropolitan Museum website recently:


Gandhara was an ancient city in Pakistan and an important cultural center of the Kushan Empire, which inherited Greco-Iranian culture and spread it over a much wider area than before. As mentioned in a previous post, the Kushans were crucial to spreading Buddhism to lands outside of India and were known to China as 月氏 (yue-zhi).

Anyhow, this statue is interesting because it closely resembles Greco-Roman artwork. Compare with something like a statue of Apollo, the Greek sun god:

Apollo of the Belvedere.jpg

Or, another Gandharan Buddha statue that is well known:

Gandhara Buddha (tnm).jpeg

Pretty interesting how Western art and culture mixed with Indian/Iranian culture to produce such works, so long ago.

1 The Met Museum has a great collection from the Kushan Empire. You can see more here.


Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

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