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Tantric form of Devi: Bagalamukhi. Jaipur, circa 1860-80. Opaque watercolour with gold on wasli. 30.3 x 24.1cm

Bagalamukhi is one of the Mahavidyas, ten tantric forms of Devi (the Hindu mother-goddess). She is golden yellow and sits on a golden throne, here with tiger feet which may allude to the Mahavidyas also being considered to be forms of Durga. Usually depicted with two arms, here she has four, one of which is raised with a club in her hand which is about to beat the head of the demon whose tongue she pulls out. This iconography of Bagalamukhi relates to her being considered to have magical powers by which she can stun adversaries into silence and thereby control them, a boon for which she is worshipped.

Inventory 000995


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Above: gilt detail reflecting light

Images and text © Peter Blohm