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Ritual apron

Ritual apron

  • Place of origin:

    Tibet (made)

  • Date:

    19th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Carved bone

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Part of a ritual costume made from carved human bone, formerly worn in Tibet by lamas (priests) of the Nyingmapa or 'Old Order' of Tibetan Buddhism during exorcisms. Such costumes were also worn by other Tibetan Buddhist orders during exorcistic monastic dances.

Physical description

An apron consisting of seven vertically placed rectangular bone plaques each carved in low relief with a dancing dakini. Between each is a small square plaque (five in total) joined diagonally and horizontally by lines of bone beads. Thirty-six carved plaques beneath this are held in a criss cross lattice of double rows of bone beads. Each plaque is decorated with one of the Eight Auspicious Emblems or with Faces of Glory. From the bottom most row of plaques hang single rows of beads with bone "bells" at their ends.

Place of Origin

Tibet (made)


19th century (made)



Materials and Techniques

Carved bone


Height: 112 cm Total, Width: 78 cm Total

Object history note

Formerly on loan from Captain E.W.Fletcher.

Descriptive line

Apron made of carved bone plaques and beads, Tibet, 19th century






Ceremonial objects


South & South East Asia Collection

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