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South Indian bronze of Ardhanari (Ardhanareeswar), androgynous fusion image of Shiva & Parvati 22.3 cm, ca 19th - 20th century

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Stunningly beautiful South Indian bronze of Ardhanari (Ardhanarishvara), a hemispheric androgynous fusion image of Shiva & Parvati with distict gender features. 22.3 cm ca 19th - 20th century, Shiva with two hands and in half dhoti, while Parvati is with female characteristics holding a lotus bud and wearing a long dhoti, standing on a circular lotus base, ca 19th - 20th century 
One of the most important of the 64 forms of Siva Ardhanari (Ardhanareeswar), Shiva and Parvati fused into an androgynous form. It may be understood that Ardhanrvara  is a Hindu iconographic device, an androgyne or hermaphrodite, which combines the male-iva and female-Dev on the right and left sides. An iconic role model in Hinduism with Siva sharing half of his body with his wife. Similar hermaphrodite form of the God as seen in Ellora Cave 7th century AD sculpture, Thiruvenkadu (Tanjore) 1045 AD, Sri Lanka (800-900 AD). Lord who is Half Woman.