The Deity Daishogun

UnknownLate Heian period, 12th century

Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts

Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts

This figure wears the armor common to the Twelve Protective Deities and Four Deva Kings, and is unique for its footwear and its crossed-ankle, seated pose. Daishogun is one of the eight protective deities who guard the cardinal directions in traditional Chinese belief, and the worship of this deity spread in Japan during the Heian period. Daishogunhachi shrine in the Kamigyoku district of Kyoto was placed in that location as the worship hall of Daishogun to protect the northwest area of the Heiankyo capital city of the day. The Daishogunhachi shrine houses many forms of the deity Daishogun, depicted in a variety of guises, whether in military apparel, formal court apparel, or sometimes in the form of a child. In addition to this figure, the Osaka Municipal Museum of Art collection also includes a seated figure of Daishogun in military garb with one foot pendant.

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  • Title: The Deity Daishogun
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: Late Heian period, 12th century
  • Location Created: Japan
  • Title(Japanese): 木造 大将軍神坐像
  • Physical Dimensions: h67.7 cm
  • Period(Japanese): 平安後期 12世紀
  • Credit Line(Japanese): 田万コレクション
  • Type: Sculpture
  • Rights: Taman Collection, Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts
  • Medium: Wood