titlepage of a manuscript
ink, paint and gold on paper
Western Tibet (Kingdom of Guge), ca. 12th-13th cent.
78 x 19 x 0.8 cm.
The titelpages of manuscripts are always thicker, mostly a couple of pasted paper leaves. In the center is a recessed rectangle, with the common starting text: rgya gar skad du, which means: `written in the Indian language’, i.e.: translated from the Sanskrit.
In this case the text is written with gold-paste on indigo-blue-background. The caracters in gold-paste are decorated with thiny, very subtle details.
Above the rectangle are remains of the original silk protective covers.