Buddhist prayer wheel

Made:
1601-1900 in Tibet

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Buddhist prayer wheel of silver and ivory, containing thousands of prayers, Tibetan, 1601-1900

Thousands of prayers written on a long tightly rolled scroll of paper are within this Buddhist prayer wheel. The prayer scroll is coiled around a rotating central spindle. It is within a casing of silver and ivory. This casing is covered with traditional carvings depicting the Buddha. Tibetan Buddhists believe rotating the prayer wheel while reciting a positive sentiment or wish known as mantra releases the prayers and combats negativity. Buddhism is a religion originating from India. It promotes ethical and unselfish behaviour. Prayer wheels such as this are still used. They are an important part of the Buddhist faith.

Details

Category:
Asian Medicine
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Object Number:
A32346
Materials:
complete, ebony, ivory, paper (fibre product) and silver (metal)
Measurements:
prayer scroll: 10000 mm x 56 mm,
type:
prayer wheel
taxonomy:
  • ceremonial object
  • religious object