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Sculpture - Holy Water Vessel

Holy Water Vessel

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Indonesia (made)

  • Date:

    14th century- 15th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    South-East Asia, Room 47a, case 18

Physical description

A globular vessel with a cover in the form of a stylised mountain, intended to hold amrita, the hold nector resulting from the churning of the ocean of milk in Hindu creation myths. Such vessel were associated with the use of sanctified water in libations.

Place of Origin

Indonesia (made)


14th century- 15th century (made)



Materials and Techniques



Height: 16 cm

Object history note

Bought from Anthony Plowright.

Descriptive line

Hanging ceremonial censor, Majapahit style, East Java, Indonesia

Labels and date

Water Vessel
This vessel is a miniature version of the mythical mountain
at the centre of the Hindu and Buddhist universe. It is also
reminiscent of the temple complex at Borobodur in central
Java. The vessel held the sanctified water used in religious
ceremonies. Symbolically, the water became amrita, the nectar
that resulted from the churning of the ocean of milk in Hindu
creation myths.
Indonesia (East Java)
Museum no. IS.7-1994 [14/06/2011]

Production Note

East Java, Indonesia


Bronze; Hinduism


South & South East Asia Collection

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