144. Agate Seal with Gajalakshmi

Gandhara, 2nd century BC
Size: 3.5 cm

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This is one of the first known representations of Gajalakshmi, who was a popular goddess of fertility during the early phase of Buddhism. Here she is represented as the protector of a city, standing on a lotus base with two elephants. The swastika and Nandipa symbol are above her head. A unique Indo-Scythian silver coin in the Ashmolean Museum has the same image. She first appears on the Baharut Stupa, showing the elephant appearing in a dream to Queen Maya, Buddha’s mother.