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Asian Art
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Buddha, probably Amitabha (Amida)

15th–16th century

Wood with pigment

9 7/8 × 9 × 7 in. (25.08 × 22.86 × 17.78 cm)
base: 1 1/2 × 12 3/4 × 7 3/8 in. (3.81 × 32.39 × 18.73 cm)
Bequest of Laura Seymour Doolittle in memory of her sister Helen Wells Seymour
1957.53.9a-b
The position of the arms indicates that the hands of this Buddha were held in the lap, possibly with the curled fingers placed back-to-back, a gesture that was used by the celestial Buddha Amitabha in East Asia. This Buddha is the focus of a popular East Asian practice known as Pure Land Buddhism; devotees hope to be reborn in Amitabha’s pure land, a paradisiacal realm in which conditions are conducive to the achievement of enlightenment.
Geography: 
Japan
Culture: 
Japanese
Period: 
Muromachi period (1336–1573)
Classification: 
Sculpture
Provenance: 

Laura Seymour Doolittle (1873 - 1957), New Haven, Conn. bequest in 1957; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.