Varuna with his Consort

S 75

Varuna with his Consort

S 75


This sculpture is one of the most beautiful depictions of Varuna and his consort. Varuna has been associated with water right from the Rigvedic times. Water is the greatest boon of nature to mankind and Varuna is “Lord of the water”, as he is designated in the Vishnudharmottara. His association with water is clearly reflected in his iconography as well, particularly through his mount makara, an aquatic creature. In this sculpture, Varuna is seated with his consort Varunani to his right, on a padmapith in Lalitasana on his mount makara. He holds in his right hand a bowl full of ratnas or jewels, symbolic of the treasures of the ocean from where they emerged at the time of the churning of the ocean. His left hand rests on his lap. The noose with which he punishes the evil doer, is shown behind him. Varuna is adorned with a necklace, a waistband, armlets, kadas, yojnopavita, while his consort varuna is decorated with fewer ornaments. Rhythmic scallops indicating clouds also signifying Varuna’s association with waters are carved around them. The sculptor has also created an effect of waves generated by the forward movement of the makara. Elaborately carved tail of the makara adds design element to the sculpture. This image probably has occupied the western wall of a temple as Varuna is the guardian deity of the Western Direction.



Object Type









8th Century CE




86 x 56 x 20 cms