VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Wooden stupa with a printed Buddhist charm (Hyakumanto darani)
CBL J 1679
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

These Buddhist charms (darani) were printed with wood and copperplates and are the oldest surviving examples of printed material from Japan. The stupas were distributed to the ten leading monasteries in Japan. This example, containing the Konpon darani charm, came from the Horyuji Temple.

History of the Object
In AD 768, the Empress Shotoku ordered one million miniature wooden stupas to contain prayers of thanksgiving for a victory in battle.

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Type
Documents 
Materials
Turned wood with traces of gesso; paper contents 
Measurements
Width 53,2 cm. Height 5,7 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Japan 
Geography
Japan 
Time period
AD 8th century ~ AD 8th century 
Creation date
8th Century; 786 
Function
houses prayer of thanksgiving 
Acquisition
Purchased privately 
Copyright
(c) Trustees of the Chester Beatty Library 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
The Chester Beatty Library  
Museum
The Chester Beatty Library 
Credit line
Trustees of the Chester Beatty Library 

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