This manuscript of the Śālibhadra-caupaī, was made in Jaisalmer (Rajasthan, India) in the 18th century and is illustrated with forty-three colourful painted miniatures. The artist was a monk called Kanakakīrti.
What is the Śālibhadra-caupaī?
The Śālibhadra-caupaī was written by Matisāra in Old Gujarati in the early 17th century. It tells the story of Śālibhadra, a very wealthy prince who lived blissfully with his thirty-two wives whilst ignoring life beyond the walls of his palace. When a visit from the king Śreṇika made him aware of the dependent nature of his condition, Śālibhadra decided to set aside his material privileges and become a monk. The story in its animated development presents many lively characters and emphasizes the merits of giving alms to Jain monks. The text, a narrative poem in verse divided in twenty-nine sections, is meant to be read but also performed with music and recitation.
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