Wooden group of Shomen Kongo, the green faced diamond deity in 8-armed configuration, standing before a flaming mandorla, accompanied by two children. Shomen Kongo tramples on two demon figures, the whole group standing on rocks, placed on a rectangular base. In his eight hands he holds a trident, sword, bow, arrows, something unidentifiable that should have been a rope (lower left hand) and an object that replaces the cakra (upper left hand). Shomen’s features: Third eye; in his crown the head of a monkey, the monkey being his messenger; skull necklace on his chest; snakes around his waist, wrists and ankles and a tiger skin bound around his waist. The boys are carrying a cup and flask(?). Polychromed wood, eyes of Shomen inlaid, crown gilded copper. Bronze fittings around corners of base, engraved with flowers. Japan, Edo period, 18/19th century.
Approximate measurements height: 29 inches; width: 15 ½ inches; depth: 11 inches.
Restaurations, few breaks, few missing tips, few lacquer chips.
Shomen Kongo originally was a plague spreading demon, but after converting to Buddhism, he became a guardian against wild animals, sickness and love spreading demons and wild weather deities. In the Edo period, he was venerated as a guardian against tuberculosis.