The Joy of Museums

Finding Beauty & Meaning in Museums


Asian Civilisations Museum - Joy of Museums - Hanuman

This bronze sculpture depicts Hanuman, who is the devoted monkey general of Rama. He is one of the central characters in the various versions of the Indian epic Ramayana. He is also mentioned in several other texts, such as the Mahabharata, the various Puranas and some Jain, Buddhist, and Sikh texts.

Hanuman takes the form of a human with a monkey head. He has a monkey-like posture and a tail. His hand placed in front of his mouth symbolises humility. He is also a popular figure in legends and arts found outside Indian subcontinent such as in Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia and Bali Indonesia.

Other South Asia and Islamic world highlights from the collection include:

Essential Facts:

  • Title:                 Hanuman
  • Dates:               12th century
  • Period:             Chola
  • Provenience:  Tamil Nadu, India
  • Materials:        Bronze
  • Dimensions:    H: 63.5 cm
  • Museum:         Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore


“A beautiful woman belongs to everyone; an ugly one is yours alone.” Indian Proverb



Photo Credit: By GordonMakryllos (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons