Chinese for Tibet
Object Place: Nanking, China
231.1 x 355.6 cm (91 x 140 in.)
Medium or Technique
Silk lampas with silk and gold metallic thread
Not On View
Temple hanging of blue silk lampas with design in gold of nine five-toed dragons clutching the Pearl of Wisdom, symbols of the emperor and his royal power, Buddhist emblems such as the Wheel of Law, canopy of state, pairs of fish, endless knot, vase and conch shell intermingling with auspicious clouds, bats and cranes, the conch shell; eyes of animals are accented with light brown silk; along the top is a row of fierce stylized masks with a jeweled garland hanging from the mouths; Tibetan inscription.
Inscription: "May my wishes be fully accomplished! Cone Tsha-rdor No-mon-han, King of the Dhama of Shar-rste, Abbot of gYung-gung of the great country of China offers this curtain made of fine fabric. May living being who are my mother and that of others, be purified of the two obscurities, may they quickly achieve the two assemblages, may they go beyond all the essential points of the practice of the sons of Buddha, and attain the Bodhi of the highest perfection, through the virtue (of this offering). (This curtain was) offered after having been made respectfully by Er-te-ni No-mon-han of imperial order, Co-ne Tsha-rdor of Ser samde, King of the Dhama of Shar-rste, to Ngag-dbang Tshul-khrims, in the 33rd year of the Khyan-lung (1768), king of China. bKra-shis! Mang-ga-lam!"
1. No-mon-han: Mongol title meaning King of the Dharm
2. gTung-gung: Lamaist monastery Tonghe Gong in Beijing?
3. Two obscurities: nyon-mong and shes-bya'i sgib-ma
4. Er-te-ni No-mon-han is probably the Manchu official in charge of the Imperial Textile factories in South-eastern China.
5. Ngag-dbang Tshul-khirms, Abbot of dGah-ldan Shar-rtse, is mentioned in Aristocracy and Government in Tibet by L. Petech, p. 230, as Samati Paksi Nag-dban Ts'ul-k'rims, regent of Tibet during the reign of the eighth Dalai Lama (1758-1804), first term 1777-81 and second term 1790-1, when the Dalai Lama was 10-14 years and 23-24 years of age.
6. Qianlong (Ch'ien'lung)
Woven at the Imperial factory (S. China Nanking area) and presented by the abbot of Gyung-gung, the most important Lamaist monastery in north-eastern Beijing, to a Tibetan abbot, Ngag-dbang Tshul-khrims; purchased by the MFA, 1984
Keith McLeod Fund