Cover: lacquer, gilding, and glass appliqué on wood; leaves: lacquer and gilding on cloth
Covers: 13.1 cm (5 3/16 in.)
Edward L. Whittemore Fund 1945.172
The Pali text of this manuscript is written in Burmese square script, which is also known as "tamarind seed script."
In premodern Burma, lay people commissioned lavishly ornamented manuscripts for ceremonial occasions, when officiants would read aloud from the text. Written in black lacquer, the text is in the language of Pali written in a Burmese script. It contains ordination rites and procedures for monastic ceremonies.
The second to last page is covered with intricately drawn, winged celestial beings (nats) in gestures of praise. They fly amid intertwining vegetation—denoting bounty—that grows from serpentine forms that refer to rain clouds. Lionlike forms inhabit the space with them. The top and bottom covers are equally ornamented with jeweled floral patterning.
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