In Buddhism, a Bodhisattva is a compassionate being who defers personal enlightenment to help others achieve salvation. The Bodhisattva of Compassion and Mercy, Avalokiteshvara—Guanyin in Chinese—was widely worshiped in China as a central figure in the Pure Land sect of Buddhism and more popularly as the patron of childbirth and of fishermen. In this intimate devotional altar in cast bronze, Guanyin (who is traditionally a male figure but later sometimes depicted in female guise in Chinese art) sits in the posture of royal ease, ready at any moment to awaken from a state of deep contemplation to aid humankind. The base of this miniature altar is flanked by two child attendants, identifiable as the “young man of excellent capacities” (Shancai dongci) and the “daughter of the Dragon King” (Longwang nu), emblematic of Guanyin’s beneficence toward children. On the right side of the deity is a bird, a common symbol of fertility associated with Guanyin. Though the left side of this work is missing its complementary symbol, it most likely depicted the precious vase that Guanyin used to dispense his nectar of compassion. The central open-face panel below the resting deity consists of plant imagery—signifying bounty and fertility—that were popular motifs on secular Chinese gold and silver ware of the 13th and 14th centuries.