Description Sculptural panels such as this one, illustrating scenes from the life of Shakyamuni Buddha, were carved for the facades of stupas, reliquary mounds enshrining remains of the Buddha or his disciples. This scene depicts the death of the Buddha, when he passed into "nirvana," the end of his cycle of rebirth. The three bejeweled lay disciples standing behind him show anguish on their faces and raise their arms in grief; two monastic followers mourn similarly (the kneeling monk is usually identified as the Buddha's disciple Ananda). One monk, however— identified as Subhadra, the Buddha’s last convert—calmly sits at the Buddha’s bedside. He remembers that the Buddha has attained nirvana, a state of non-existence and freedom from suffering.
Provenance Mr. and Mrs. Anthony A. Manheim [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1978, by gift.
Credit Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Anthony A. Manheim, 1978
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