This umbrella is made of a bamboo frame, and covered with a shiny golden synthetic fabric or golden paper. Its condition is fragile. Although the provenance of this umbrella is unknown, these types of umbrellas are made on the east side of the Maha-muni pagoda in Mandalay, and therefore this may be suggested as a provenance. It can be dated to 20th century.

These types of umbrellas are ‘made especially for novication ceremonies. They are purchased by friends and relatives as a fitting ‘royal accoutrement’ for a young ‘prince’ as he is borne aloft a pomp and ceremony to the monastery. On arrival he is ceremoniously divested of his kingly raiment, including his umbrella, in favour of the tonsure and monks robes’ (Fraser-Lu 1994:292). The ceremony is basically a re-enactment of when Prince Siddhartha gave up all his worldly goods and started on his road to enlightenment.

Apart from the monastic ceremony, golden umbrellas are otherwise only permitted to be used by Royal Princes and High Officials, and even then the quality is supreme.

Object Summary

Accession Loan No.
Collection Class
Personal objects
Collection Area Region
woodpigmentcottoncanecotton binding wood
Common Name
Simple Name
Production County
?Shan States
Production Country

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