Shrine of the 5th Celestial Buddha, Amoghasiddha on the north side of the base of the temple of Adi Buddha, Sambhunath. April 1854
Artist: Oldfield, Henry Ambrose (1822-1871)
Watercolour of the shrine of the 5th Celestial Buddha, Amoghasiddha at Swayambhunath in Nepal, by Henry Ambrose Oldfield (1822-1871), dated April 1854. The image is inscribed on the reverse: 'Shrine of the 5th Celestial Buddha, Amoghasiddha on the north side of the base of the temple of Adi Buddha, Sambhunath. April 1854', together with notes.
Dr Oldfield, who was Residency Surgeon at Kathmandu from 1850-1863, wrote in Volume II of his 'Sketches from Nipal, Historical and Descriptive...' (1880): "Round the base of the hemisphere or mound of the temple and built partly into its plinth, opposite the four cardinal points, are five large shrines, covered with copper-gilt, and each of which contains a gilt image, rather larger than life size, of one of the divine Buddhas...Above each shrine is a gilt toran or escutcheon, on which is represented in relief a figure of Garura standing upon a pair of nagkunyas, or mermaids, each of which is supported upon the coils of the tail of a grotesque sea-dragon...Below the northern shrine, is a stone relief of Amoghasiddha, with a couple of attendant mermaids seated on a coil of snakes. In front of this northern shrine is a square basin or depression in the pavement, in which these attendant serpents of Amoghasiddha are supposed to reside."