A set of 24 double-sided folios of a Pancaraksa manuscript with illuminated paintings of protective deities on 6 of the folios.
The Pancaraksa is a collection of five Buddhist sutras that explain the powers of the deities and recite the deeds they accomplished.
The opening page of each sutra in the complete Pacaraksa manuscript has a miniature in the centre depicting the relevant female deity invoked for protection [Rakasa = Protection]
This is a dispersed set and consists of 24 folios from manuscript all made of
thick hardy multi-layered handmade paper.
The script is an older form of Sanskrit called Pracalit and has been written in an extraordinarily-artistic hand unlike many Nepali manuscripts that are scripted in novice handwriting.
The miniatures paintings have gold highlights and have been affixed onto the folios in the boxed spaces left blank during the inscription.
The most remarkable feature of this set is the gold speckling seen all over the folios [See photos]. This feature is rare and has not been noted in any other manuscripts.
25cm x 8cm / 9.8 in x 3.15 in
The condition is as can be seen in the photos. There is edge wear, stains, tears and other damage related to age and usage on the folios as well as the paintings.
Estimated to be from the 1700s or earlier