Lokanat, guardian of the four directions
Black lacquered wood with gilding and glass inlays
Burma, 19th Century
BC 87.01.07.00, BC 87.01.08.00; Northern Illinois University
Konrad and Sarah Bekker Collection
The Lokanat, usually found as a male-gendered pair, are also called Kaba Saung Nat. These were typically positioned at the foot of the throne, regardless of whether a particular throne was occupied by the Buddha or by a Burmese king. The sounds emanating from the footbells clasped between the toes of these figures dispel anger and assure harmony within the throne room and kingdom beyond, be it spiritual or temporal.