Central Asian Warrior
from Qieszil, Tarim Basin
5th–early 6th century

A larger image of this central asian warrior from Qieszil, Tarim Basin

Date: 5th–early 6th century
Culture: Central Asia
Medium: Water-based pigment on mud plaster
Dimensions: 9 1/4 x 5 3/8 in. (23.5 x 13.7 cm)
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Accession Number: 51.94.1

Armored figures are sometimes shown as devotees in the later cave temples at Kizil, at related sites such as Tumshuq, and in the secular wall paintings of Sogdia. They represent the ruling military elite who controlled the oasis kingdoms, such as those centered in Kucha on the northern part of the Silk Road and in Khotan on the southern branch.

Inscription: On back (pencil):
IV Reise Qieszil. gr. Anl.
Blaue Höhle
g. No. 2

[IV Travel Qizil {Kizil}
Blue cave]

Illustrations of Soldiers from Bezeklik, Kizil, Karashahr & Khotan: Tarim Basin Frescos