Tamil Nadu sculptures
Ten antiquities (sculptures) retrieved from Australia and the United States were handed over to the Government of Tamil Nadu in Delhi.
Some of the returned antiquities, and how they had gone missing:
- Dvarapala: Belongs to the Vijayanagar dynasty dating to the 15th-16th century. He is holding a gada in one hand and has another leg raised up to the level of his knee. The sculpture was burgled from Moondreeswaramudayar Temple, Tiruneveli in1994.
- Nataraja: A depiction of Shiva, in his divine cosmic dance form, is in tribhanga posture, standing on the lotus pedestal. It is dateable to the 11th-12th century. Possibly, ananda tandava or the Dance of Bliss is portrayed here. The sculpture was burgled from the strong room of Punnainallur Arulmigu Mariyamman Temple, Thanjavur.
- Kankalamurti: A fearsome aspect of Lord Shiva and Bhairava. The sculpture is four-armed, holding ayudhas such as damaru and trishula in the upper hands and a bowl and a trefoil shaped object, as a treat for the playful fawn, in the lower right hand. The idol is dateable to the 12th-13th century, and was stolen from Narasinganadhar Swamy Temple, Tirunelveli in 1985.
- Nandikeshvara: This bronze image of Nandikeshvara, dateable to the 13th century, is shown standing in tribhanga posture with folded arms, holding an axe and a fawn in the upper arms, with his forearms in namaskara mudra. This sculpture was stolen from Narasinganadhar Swamy Temple, Tirunelveli, in 1985.
- Four-armed Vishnu: Dateable to the 11th century, and belonging to the later Chola period. The sculpture has Lord Vishnu standing on a padma pedestal holding attributes such as shankha and chakra in two hands; while the lower right hand is in abhaya mudra. It was stolen from Arulmigu Varadharaja Perumal Temple, Ariyalur, in 2008.
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