Image of Tsongkhapa - decoration of the Buddhist altar. Mongols. 19th century
Je Tsongkhapa an outstanding religious leader and a founder of the religious school Gelug - the newest and main school of Northern Buddhism. In Tibet Tsongkhapa was considered to be a second Buddha. This sculpture is a unique monument of Buddhist art from the collection of Russian museum of Ethnography.
This sculpture belongs to the famous collection of well-known traveler and Orientalist Prince E.E. Ukhtomsky. His collection comprised 2.500 items and according to his contemporaries was the most complete collection of Buddhist objects "having no equals". In 1902 Emperor Nicholas II purchased the collection the collection of E.E. Ukhtomsky with his personal money and transferred it as a gift to the Ethnography Department of the Russian Museum. In the 1930s the main part of it was transferred to the State Hermitage.