Mask of Vaikuntha Vishnu, late 5th century. Learn more about 5th century masks
A Hindu deity of war worshipped predominantly in southern India. The worship of Subrahmanya as Murugan is particularly popular in Tamil Nadu. While different mythological texts present different stories of his birth, he is commonly considered to be a son of the deity Shiva and the commander of the army of gods. Iconographic representations of him also differ, corresponding to different features, such as the number of faces or arms. However, he is generally depicted carrying a sakti (a lance-like weapon), a vajra (thunderbolt) and a kukkuta (cock/rooster), with a peacock as his vahana (mount).