Figure of standing Bodhisattva, possibly Siddhartha

unknown3rd century AD

Royal Ontario Museum

Royal Ontario Museum
Toronto, Canada

The ROM's collection contains three remarkable large standing bodhisattvas. In Gandhara, bodhisattvas were depicted in the finery of Indian princes. This figure is thought by some scholars to represent Prince Siddhartha before he became the Buddha. His headdress shows Surya, the Vedic Sun God, in his horse-drawn chariot. The inclusion of non-Buddhist imagery shows how early Buddhism expressed enlightenment through visual language that was accessible to a wide population.


  • Title: Figure of standing Bodhisattva, possibly Siddhartha
  • Creator: unknown
  • Date: 3rd century AD
  • Location: Gandhara, Pakistan
  • Physical Dimensions: w45.7 x h122.6 cm
  • Provenance: This purchase was made possible with the support of The Reuben Wells Leonard Bequest Fund
  • Type: Sculpture
  • Medium: Carved grey schist
  • Accession Number: 939.17.8

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