About this object

A silver prayer wheel with bone handle decorated in deep and fine repousse work. The top band of decoration features the Eight Auspicious Symbols, the lower band the Seven Embelms of Royalty. The top is decorated with a lotus flower, finished with a lotus bud finial and the base is decorated with a double dorje.

Object specifics

  • Type
    Religion; Personal Object
  • Culture
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Asia: Central Asia: Tibet [China]: Ü-Tsang: Lhasa
  • Date made
    1904 before
  • Materials
    Paper Plant; Bone Animal; Silver; Gilt Silver; Iron
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Purchased from the collections of Norwich Castle Museum, 1956
  • Collector
    John Claude White
  • Place collected
    Asia: Central Asia: Tibet [China]: Ü-Tsang: Lhasa
  • Date collected
  • Measurements
    310 mm x 100 mm x 87 mm
  • Note
    Curator's notes: The label notes that the prayer wheel came from the Jokhang in Lhasa, 1904. This ties the prayer wheel to the Mission to Lhasa led by Francis Younghusband. By the time the British arrived in Lhasa in August 1904 there was a ban on looting, but if this wasn't looted then how did White acquire this? Was it a gift of necessity made by a Tibet, or a gift from the Chinese Amban who facilitated the British visit to the Jokhang, or did John Claude White take it as he was guided through this sacred site? Written by Emma Martin, 7th July 2017.
  • Related people
    John Claude White ( Collector)

Explore related


  • Mission to Lhasa 1903-1904

    Start date: 1903
    End date: 1903
    Description: The British Mission to Tibet during 1903 and 1904 was an invasion of southern Tibet by British Indian forces on the pretence of negotiating trade relations between Tibet and British India. However, this was instigated primarily in the hope of preventing the Russian Empire from interfering in Tibetan affairs and thus gaining a base in one of the buffer states surrounding British India. The expedition was led by Colonel (later Sir) Francis Younghusband. It had a damaging effect on the British reputation, many Tibetans were killed and monasteries and houses were looted and/or destroyed along the way. The 13th Dalai Lama feld Lhasa before the arrival of the expedition and Younghusband negotiated, a soon to be repelled, convention with the Tibetan government or Kashag in Lhasa that was signed in the Potala on 7 Septmber 1904.

Object view = Humanities
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