Reliquary in the Shape of a Stupa

Date: ca. 4th–5th century

Culture: Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)

Medium: Bronze

Dimensions: H. 22 3/4 in. (57.8 cm); W. 7 1/2 in. (19.1 cm)

Classification: Sculpture

Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Donald J. Bruckmann, 1985

Accession Number: 1985.387a, b


The stupa sits atop a Corinthian capital bracketed by four felines with wings and beaks. Its elaborate form suggests it was placed in a shrine where it was seen rather than enclosed in a solid masonry stupa. A similar masonry stupa in a monastic cell at the site of Kalawan attests to veneration of this stupa type in the late Gandharan tradition.