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    Sale 1976

    Fine Chinese Ceramics And Works Of Art

    19 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 480

    A JADE SCABBARD CHAPE AND A JADE SCABBARD SLIDE

    LATE EASTERN ZHOU/HAN DYNASTY, 4TH CENTURY BC-1ST CENTURY AD

    Price Realised  

    A JADE SCABBARD CHAPE AND A JADE SCABBARD SLIDE
    LATE EASTERN ZHOU/HAN DYNASTY, 4TH CENTURY BC-1ST CENTURY AD
    The scabbard chape of lenticular section, both sides well carved wtih angular scrolls, the ends flat and the smaller end drilled for attachment to the bottom of the scabbard, the stone of pale greenish-yellow tone with russet markings; the rectangular scabbard slide with curved top also well carved with angular scrolls and a taotie mask at one side, the greenish-white stone with feathery russet markings overall
    2¼ in. (5.7 cm.) wide; 4¾ in. (12 cm.) long, two boxes (2)


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    This finely polished chape of elegant shape and good yellow-green color is a fine example of a type of sword fitting seen in the late Eastern Zhou and Han periods that was attached to the bottom of the scabbard. The angular scroll pattern seen on many of these chapes seems to have evolved from the taotie mask. Compare the similar example dated to the late Zhou dynasty illustrated by S. Jenyns, Chinese Archaic Jades in the British Museum, 1951, pl. XXXIV (bottom right), and another illustrated by Bo Zhongmo, Guyu Jingying (The Art of Jade Carving in Ancient China), Taiwan, 1989-90, p. 34, pl. 65 (left), which also illustrates rubbings of the side and the bottom showing the attachment holes.

    A very similarly carved jade scabbard slide in the Ma'anshan Museum was excavated at Simenkou, Ma'anshan. See Gu Fang, The Complete Collection of Jades Unearthed in China, vol. 6, Beijing, 2005, p. 150.

    Provenance

    Scabbard chape: J.D. Chen King-Kwei Collection.
    Mayuyama, Tokyo, late 1950s.
    Scabbard slide: acquired in the mid-1980s.


    Literature

    Scabbard chape: J. D. Chen, Essays on Chinese Antiquities, The First Album of the King-Kwei Collection, Hong Kong, 1952, p. 42, no. 35.


    Exhibited

    Scabbard chape: San Francisco, Golden Gate Park, Hall of Flowers, Treasures of the Orient, Society for Asian Art, 1979, no. 18d.