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    Sale 2108

    The Imperial Wardrobe: Fine Chinese Costume And Textiles From The Linda Wrigglesworth Collection

    19 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 26

    A FIVE-COLOR-CLOUD EMBROIDERED BLUE SILK GAUZE SUMMER DRAGON ROBE, JIFU

    JIAQING PERIOD (1796-1820)

    Price Realised  

    A FIVE-COLOR-CLOUD EMBROIDERED BLUE SILK GAUZE SUMMER DRAGON ROBE, JIFU
    JIAQING PERIOD (1796-1820)
    The blue silk gauze worked in couched gold thread and fine counted stitch with nine five-clawed dragons pursuing flaming pearls amidst five-color clouds interspersed with bats and the Eight Daoist Emblems (baxian) above a wide terrestrial diagram and lishui stripe separated by billowing ruyi-shaped clouds, with similar decoration repeated on the border, collar and horsehoof cuffs, with pleated midnight-blue silk gauze sleeve extensions
    55 in. (139 cm.) long x 80 in. (203.2 cm.) across


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    The bright gold couching and the counted-stitch embroidery against the textured gauze ground provide a striking contrast. A very similar blue gauze dragon robe, but without the addition of the Eight Daoist Emblems, as in the present lot, is illustrated by C. Hall et al., Power Dressing, Textiles for Rulers and Priests from the Chris Hall Collection, Asian Civilizations Museum, 2006, p. 147, no. 23, where the authors note that "blue was the color used on dragon robes worn by the third and fourth degree princes, nobles down to the eleventh degree, and officials". They further state that the appearance of the five-clawed dragons together with the color and style indicate that the robe was likely made to be worn by a third or fourth degree prince or noble, as would have been the case with the present robe.