Published by Guiseppi Tucci Antique, 1949 Tibetan Painted Scrolls. 3 vols. Rome: La libreria dello stato.
The Thangka was reproduced only as black-and-white photo in this edition. Dharmapala Thangka centre got the order to find out the old original colors for a faithful copy.
Original Discription of Guissepi Tucci:
"A monstrous creature, with four heads and four arms, whirling in his cosmic dance, looms gigantic in the centre of this thangka. A bruised human body writhes the pitiless grip of its huge mouth. The weight of the monsters awful bulks crushes a demon.
Twisting in the throes of atrocious pain. The god wears a wreath of skulls, his ornaments are snakes, curling and twining in threatening coils. Thus Tibetan iconography represents Mahakala, Nag po c´en po, an precisely the form known by the name of Nag po c´en po zin skyon stobs ap´rog dban po. He usually represented with four heads; the central one is blue and chews a human body, the one of the left, white, is smiling grimly; the red head on the left has a most fierce expression and a fourth dark head is on top.
The first right hand brandishes a gri gug with a rdo rje shaped handle and cuts with it a skull, supported by the corresponding left hand; it is used as a cup, in which the demons´ blood will be poured.
In the other hand on the right side the god holds a sword [according to other iconographical treatises, a small lance]. In the last hand on the left, a lance ending in a trident.
[...] He tramples on a body symbolizing the demons bGegs. Each head has three eyes, and the garland crowning two of the heads is made of skulls, the girdle [do sal] is strung with human heads freshly severed. The figure stands out horribly from a flaming halo which dances all about him in the flickering fury of its fiery tongue. Below, in a vortex of fire, four witches whirl; they are naked, with breasts withered and flabby and they brandish the gri gug in their right hands and grasp a skull cup in the left.[..]
In the centre, below, Mahakala, in a Brahman´s aspect [Bram ze gzugs can dba´po] playing the rkan glin, a flute made out of a human tight bone, while his right hand frantically shakes the magic tambourine [damaru].
On the top of the thangka rDo rhe ac´an with shakti: between images of saints and Buddha.