A work of sculptural elegance in its own right, this leogryph-form handle would have been attached to a circular tray meant to catch embers, and likely would have been used in a ritual context. The elegant design and lavish use of materials speaks to the importance of ritual objects in early Buddhism in the Gandharan region during ancient times. A comparable example of an incense burner with a leogryph handle, dated to the first century A.D. and in the collection of the National Museum of Pakistan is illustrated by A. Proser in The Buddhist Heritage of Pakistan, New York, 2011, p. 89, cat. no. 3, and described by H. Ingolt in Gandharan Art in Pakistan, New York, 1957, fig. 493.