These two paintings show successive episodes in the story. There are two captions in the left-hand margin: Jasogha vairāgu – ‘Yaśogha’s disgust for worldly life’ – and Jasodhara paṭṭavandhu – ‘Royal turban bound to Yaśodhara’.

The second caption is repeated in the right-hand margin. The captions are numbered, though in the wrong order, so that ‘2’ appears in the left margin while ‘1’ is in the right margin.

Left panel

A richly dressed, bearded man holds up a mirror and his other hand. Facing him is a bejewelled woman bearing a tray.

As described in the text on the preceding page, King Yaśogha finds a white hair. He is reminded that youth is not eternal, that birth as a human being, which is so difficult to get, should not be wasted. He has had a pleasant life with his wife, Queen Candramatī, but he decides to become a monk and entrust the kingdom to his son, Yaśodhara.

The lady in front of him in the picture may be Queen Candramatī or a servant. There is no mention of any lady in the text. But the white hair, which is a literary motif marking a turning point in a story and the change of king, is often discovered by the queen or a servant while combing the king’s hair.

Right panel

A beardless male figure sits on a high platform, a parasol above his head. Either side of him a man raises high a decorated pot.

The coronation of Prince Yaśodhara is shown. The parasol and raised seat on a platform, symbols of royalty, indicate his new status.

On each side is an attendant who carries a jug of sacred water used in the coronation ceremony. The ceremony is technically called ‘anointment’ – abhiṣeka – which implies the pouring of water.

The long protruding eye is a typical feature of western Indian painting. Its origin is unclear.

Other visual elements

This is a good example of an average manuscript. A red background is used for the painting but there is no use of gold, intricate design elements or elaborate script.

The bottom of the right margin contains the number 20, which is the folio number.

In the upper margin there is one syllable missing from the main text. The number before it is the line number where it should be inserted.


The script used for the main text is the Jaina Devanāgarī script. It is used for writing numerous Indian languages, here Apabhraṃśa Prakrit.