A GILT-BRONZE BELT PLAQUE IN THE SHAPE OF A YAK
A GILT-BRONZE BELT PLAQUE IN THE SHAPE OF A YAK

NORTH CHINA, 3RD-2ND CENTURY BC

Details
A GILT-BRONZE BELT PLAQUE IN THE SHAPE OF A YAK
NORTH CHINA, 3RD-2ND CENTURY BC
The plaque is cast partially in relief in the shape of a recumbent yak or ox shown with its head resting on its foreleg and its tail flicked up onto its back. There are long hair markings on the body, and there are two squared loops projecting from the back which has a woven pattern indicating the plaque was cast using the lost-wax/lost-textile process.
3 5/8 in. (9.2 cm.) long, box
Provenance
Norbert Schimmel (1904-1990) Collection, New York.
Antiquities from the Norbert Schimmel Collection; Sotheby’s New York, 16 December 1992, lot 21.
The Erwin Harris Collection, Miami, Florida.
Literature
J. F. So and E. C. Bunker, Traders and Raiders on China's Northern Frontier, Washington D.C., Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, 1995, p. 140, no. 59b.

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Lot Essay

A similar pair of plaques is illustrated by E. C. Bunker et al., Nomadic Art of the Eastern Eurasian Steppes, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2002, pp. 98-99, no. 65, where the authors note that similar plaques "have been found all over northern China", including a pair in Shouzhou, Anhui province, the capital of the state of Chu from 241 to 223 BC. As with the present plaque, they have two squared vertical loops on the reverse and show evidence of having been cast with the lost-wax/lost-textile process, as was another similar plaque, one half of a belt closure in the Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm, illustrated by O. Karlbeck, B.M.F.E.A., No. 27, Stockholm, 1955, pl. 32 (1).

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