Chinthe & Myawati Ox Cart Prow Decoration
10" High x 2.5" Wide x 21" Long
The chinthe is a highly stylized leogryph ,lion-like creature, commonly depicted in Burmese iconography and Myanmar architecture, especially as a pair of guardians flanking the entrances of Buddhist pagodas and kyaung , Buddhist monasteries. In Burmese, chinthe is synonymous with the Burmese word for lion.
The story of why chinthes guard the entrances of pagodas and temples is given as such from the Mahavamsa:
The princess Suppadevi of Vanga Kingdom ,present day Bengal,had a son named Sinhabahu through her marriage to a lion, but later abandoned the lion who then became enraged and set out on a road of terror throughout the lands. The son then went out to slay this terrorizing lion. The son came back home to his mother stating he slew the lion, and then found out that he killed his own father. The son later constructed a statue of the lion as a guardian of a temple to atone for his sin.
The Myawati here is a Burmese Spitting Cobra. Mandalay spitting cobras are alert and defensive snakes, quickly raising their forebodies and spreading a broad hood when faced with a threat. Very little provocation is required to cause them to spit. The venom can be efficiently expelled at least 2 m (6.6 ft) in distance. In addition to spitting, this species will often also charge forward towards the threat while hissing loudly.
Please refer back to the information about Burmese Bullock Cart Prow Decorations on the previous page.
Handmade in teak wood in Burma