Historical period(s)
Angkor period, 12th century
H x W x D: 56.2 x 161.3 x 21.9 cm (22 1/8 x 63 1/2 x 8 5/8 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Accession Number
On View Location
Sackler Gallery 26b: Power in Southeast Asia
Sculpture, Stone

Architectural fragment

Angkor period (802 - 1431), architecture, Cambodia, lotus, WWII-era provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Previous Owner(s)

Dr. Arthur M. Sackler 1913-1987


At the center of the sandstone lintel, two wrestling figures intertwine around a lotus stalk. Scrolling vegetation unfurls to either side. The lintel is an architectural element that would have been placed over a doorway in a Khmer temple, either in present-day northeastern Thailand or Cambodia.

The warriors' posture, with one foot pressed against the other's thigh, suggests they represent Bhima and Duryodhana, embattled heroes from the Indian epic, the Mahabharata. Although the deity seated on top of the lotus appears often in reliefs from the Khmer kingdom, especially in the eleventh century, his identity remains a mystery. His position kneeling on one knee closely compares with images of charioteers depicted in Khmer relief carvings.

Published References
  • Emma C. Bunker Douglas Latchford. Adoration and Glory: The Golden Age of Khmer Art., 1st Edition. Chicago. p. 235.
Collection Area(s)
Southeast Asian Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
F|S Southeast Asia
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