Antique Kumkum Container, Nepal (1278XAE) $295


H: 3” Dia: 2.875″ | FREE SHIPPING!

This  finely designed bronze kumkum container was used in Hindu worship (puja). It is a well-shaped ornamented cup divided artistically into three sections: a top flat lip surrounded by decorative bosses and parallel lines, and band of stylized leaves, and set on a tubular trunk on a decorative base.  Also known as chopra containers, they were made from a variety of materials, although bronze was rather rare and used by wealthy Hindu women and royalty to store tikka kumkuma powder, as the poor could only afford those made from wood or pottery.


A kumkum container is as part of Hindu puja used for Hindu social and religious markings. Kumkum is dried and made into a paste combined with small amounts of slaked lime sometimes embellished with a few grains of rice that turns the turmeric reddish and is used to apply a tikka – a small dot applied on the forehead between the eyebrows. This spot is said to be the focal point of wisdom and concentration and is where the spiritual third eye is centered. Hindu’s believe this is the sixth of the body’s seven chakras or energy vortexes where an energy channel opens humans up to the spiritual and the divine. The tikka is said to prevent energy loss, preserve spiritual energy, and enhance concentration. Hindu religious gatherings and puja begin with the application of a tikka.  Women from certain Hindu sects wear a tikka as a sign they are married, and it is thought to be improper for them to appear in public without one. This powder and other mixes are  thrown into the air during the Hindu festival of colors (Holi). This container from Nepal is fine Hindu Ritual Art metalwork, possibly made using the lost wax process. This antique piece purchased in the 1970s in Kathmandu, Nepal has a very fine patina. This piece is part of the VA Spiritual-and-Inspirational Collection of Hindu-Cultural-and-Ritual Art.

Additional information

Weight 4 lbs
Dimensions 6 × 6 × 6 in
Place of Origin



18-19th Century

Materials and Technique

Bronze/brass/copper alloy

Dimensions (inches)

Ht: 3” Dia: 2.875””

Dimensions (metric)

Ht: 7.62cm Dia: 7.3cm




Very good, wear consistent with age and use/no restorations/repairs

Reference Number


Shipping Box Size