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A kamawa-sa

A kamawa-sa

  • Place of origin:

    Burma (made)

  • Date:

    c. 17th century-18th century (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Palm leaves, red lacquered and silvered/gilded.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Complete 12 folio version.
2 cord holes.
5 lines, 30 char., Pali; Burmese tamarind-seed large script in black lacquer.
Paginated with Burmese letters.
Interlines: foliage against a fine hatch-stroke ground.
Borders: row of beads within fine lines.
Middle folio margins: 2.5 cm. decorated with a repeating lotus pattern within fine lines.
First folio recto: decorated with a row of 10 seated Buddhas in bhumisparsmudra under the Bodhi tree.
First folio verso: central text within margins (12.5 cm.) in each one a seated Buddha in bhumisparsamudra under the Bodhi tree, flanked by 2 kneeling devotees.
Second folio recto: mirrors preceeding side.
Penultimate folio verso: see first folio verso.
Final folio recto: mirrors preseeding page.
Final folio verso: see first folio recto

Place of Origin

Burma (made)


c. 17th century-18th century (made)

Materials and Techniques

Palm leaves, red lacquered and silvered/gilded.


Length: 53.5 cm, Width: 9 cm

Descriptive line

Rare fine example of a red lacquered. silver/gilded palm leaf kamawa-sa (Burmese Buddhist Ms.). Konbaung Dynasty (1752-1885) or earlier. Pali text, tamarind seed script, with foliate and figurative decorative motifs.

Production Note

Manuscript is undated but quality and style suggest 18th or even 17th century manufacture.

Attribution note: Considered by Mme. Filliozat of the National Bibliotheque, Paris (1996), to perhaps have come from a Royal Library. The folios are very wide denoting an unusual/rare type of palm tree. Carefully worked; beautifully illustrated; similar to other mss. from Royal collections.


Palm; Lacquer; Gilt


Gilding; Lacquering; Forming


South & South East Asia Collection

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