Veerabhadra

This is Kevala Veerabhadra, standing on his own. He is identified by his attributes sword, arrow, bow and shield, clockwise starting from his right hand. One thing to note, the order in which the attributes are held is the same in all Veerabhadra Vigrahas.

In this example Veerabhdra’s posture is erect, Sambhanga. The Mundamala, skull garland, brings out the Rudra aspect of him.

Some view Veerabhadra as an aspect of Siva and for the background please refer to another blog on this site. It is not uncommon to see the line between Veerabhadra and protective village deity (Grama devata) getting blurred.

There are a few Veerabhadra vigrahas in my collection. A couple of observations.

  • More often than not the shield, on his left lower hand, normally rests on a support so as to not to touch the ground. It may rest on his feet (as in this example), or a Cobra or a severed head. Some of the relevant examples are below.
  • It is also interesting to note Veerabhadra is one of the very few deities depicted in tribal, folk and Nagara (classical) style. An example of Nagara style is included for comparison. The first one in the photo below.

The Vigraha is almost 18 cm in height. It is from Karnataka. The Vigraha may be dated to the nineteenth century or maybe a bit earlier.

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