Burmese word for lion, cinthe is a highly stylized depiction of a mythological lion-like beast commonly used as a decorative motif on many every-day utilitarian objects and in architecture as pairs guarding the entrance to residences, monasteries, pagodas and temples.

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  • Antique Ox Cart with Chinthe Lion, Burma/Myanmar (11306FSE) $325

    H: 14.5”  W: 17.75”  D: 3.375” | FREE SHIPPING!

    Finely carved figures were attached to ox cart yokes to protect farmers from malevolent spirits who inhabited all seen and unseen sectors of their environment. This beautifully carved ox cart yolk was created in the image of a chinthe, (the word for lion) a mythical creature commonly represented in Burma to decorate a multiplicity of everyday items. Considered a propitious spiritual and protective guardian figure, the chinthe symbolizes power, courage, and strength. This carving displays the common characteristics of singhas with a long face with large eyes, a long sharp nose, a long draping lion-like beard, and a flame-like shape on the top of his head. He stands on all four legs holding his beard that extends from his open roaring mouth with sharply pointed teeth that combine elegance with strong beast-like strength. He is masterfully carved with careful attention to details like the deeply incised hairs that cover his body. For functional reasons, the piece is in two parts held together with a wooden plug. Even though it was for daily use, Burmese craftsmen created beautiful objects and finished them with the best materials they could afford. This piece was originally covered with lacquer, most of which has faded with use over time.  It is in good condition with losses to his left side, fading surface, and wear consistent with its age and use.

  • Vintage Heddle Pulley with a Mythical Animal , Burma/Myanmar (3303EKE) $225

    Ht: 12”  W: 4.125”  D: 3.25” | FREE SHIPPING!

    In Burma/Myanmar, heddle-pulleys are usually decorated with carvings of mythical or auspicious animals believed to provide protection to and assure good quality weaving from the weaver. This heddle pulley is surmounted with a carved chinthe, a Burmese lion depicted here as a powerful beast with its mouth open in a roar with a powerful neck covered with a thick mane, and hair piled on top of the head, all reinforcing his ferocity.  This fine carving is in excellent condition with few signs of wear and age and  is mounted on a metal pole on a black wood base. His feet firmly rest on top of the downward-pointing triangle and he pushes his body unnaturally high on its hind legs and bends its tail up and forward to touch his head. This tail-touching-head image is often used with Burmese heddle pulleys to highlight the area under the animal where the thread used in the weaving travels around the bobbin between the wood round triangle pieces holding it.

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