Asia Week auction, WTF5: Pakistan, Northwest Frontier. When and how did the Bodhisattva lose his head?

Carlton Rochell Asian Art has the head of a Bodhisattva (in Buddhist thought, an enlightened being), from the Northwest Frontier of Pakistan, lacking any other information whatsoever.

When Buddhists call these people enlightened beings, they don’t mean it literally. How did the Bodhisattva lose his head (or, indeed, where did he leave his body)?

Was the Bodhisattva decapitated before or after the Talibanisation of north-western Pakistan? Was he beheaded before or after the Antiquities Act of 1975, the Antiquities Act of 1947, the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act of 1904…?

Who did they get this from and how?

And, more importantly, who was the source of their source, who supplied their supplier?

Who had – or who got – in order to be able to trade it?

Head of a Bodhisattva. Pakistan, Northwest Frontier. Gandhara, 3rd/4th Century A.D. Gray Schist. Height: 11 inches (27.9 cm).

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