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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 19

    A RARE MILITARY OFFICIAL'S RANK BADGE OF A LION, BUZI

    17TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    A RARE MILITARY OFFICIAL'S RANK BADGE OF A LION, BUZI
    17TH CENTURY
    Made for a second rank military official, embroidered with a lion with green mane and tail shown seated amidst multicolored clouds and flames atop a rock amidst waves with head turned to the side and mouth open in a roar to show its fangs, all worked in vibrant shades of green, orange, blue, yellow and white couched silk floss and couched gold threads on an unusual twisted blue silk thread ground
    14¾ x 15 in. (37.5 x 38 cm.), mounted


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    Second rank military officers were assigned square lion badges which were applied to the chest and back of their official robes worn at the Ming dynasty court. This bold design with large lozenge-shaped clouds, prism-like rocks and rolling waves, reflects the aesthetic developments of the later Ming period. This badge was part of a group of over twenty similar badges once sewn into a large curtain or canopy reportedly from the collection of the Palazzo Corsini in Florence. See C. Hall, "Chinese or Korean? The Palazzo Corsini Rank Badges", Hali 104 (May-June 1999), pp. 66-8. Although the embroidery is not refined, perhaps done in a provincial or private workshop, the materials and style as well as the exuberant colors and large scale motifs of these badges are typically late Ming/early Qing.

    Lion badges from the same group have been published. One from the Jobrenco Limited Trustee Hall Collection Trust, C. Hall et al., Heaven's Embroidered Cloths: One Thousand Years of Chinese Textiles, Hong Kong, Urban Council of Hong Kong, 1995, pp. 66-8, and one from a private European collection, J.E. Vollmer, Silks for Thrones and Altars: Chinese Costumes and Textiles from the Liao through the Qing dynasty, Paris, 2003, no. 12, pp. 36-7. See, also, the example illustrated by C. Hall et. al., Power Dressing: Textiles for Rulers and Priests from the Chris Hall Collection, Asian Civilizations Museum, Singapore, 2006, p. 240, no. 69.

    Provenance

    Palazzo Corsini, Florence.