Lot 41. A LARGE SCABBARD CHAPE IN GREEN JADE WITH AN ENGRAVED DESIGN

Starting price:€ 1 500
Auction date:29.09.2017   16:00 UTC +02:00
Archive
ID 7379
Lot 41A LARGE SCABBARD CHAPE IN GREEN JADE WITH AN ENGRAVED DESIGN
Jade. China, Han dynasty, 3rd - 2nd century BC
玉劍珌 - 漢代, 公元前3世紀-前2世紀

Height: 6.1 cm; Width: 8.4 cm
高 6.1 厘米,寬 8.4 厘米

The scabbard chape, a sword ornament of the Han dynasty, was used to protect the tip of the iron sword that was inserted into the hole drilled on one of the flat, plain edges. The present example has the typical trapezoidal shape of these ornaments, with gently curving sides and an elliptical cross-section: the two sides are decorated with a seemingly abstract pattern of interlocking squarish linked scrolls that are placed symmetrically back to back along the central axis, with other scrolls along the side borders.

The pattern is actually a highly stylized taotie 饕餮, or animal mask, which on other scabbard chapes of the Han dynasty may also be represented in its entirety. The contour of each single element of the design is stressed by tiny incised lines which balance the t-shaped elements carved in low relief, creating a subtle interplay of forms on each of the two sides. A plain border is carved around the entire central design and a cross-shaped perforation is drilled on the shortest edge.

The highly polished jade is translucent and mostly green with diffused alterations in the form of scattered white patches that cover the surfaces. Most of the chape is smooth, except for the altered areas which are a bit rougher.

Literature comparison/Archaeological sites: Comparable scabbard chapes decorated with similar motifs include a few in the Freer/Sackler Galleries (accession numbers F1939.16, S1987.491, S1987.554, S1987.854) and one in the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (accession number no.50.46.291).



Expertise: Prof. Dr. Filippo Salviati

From an Austrian collection
奧地利老佔有

All jades in this catalogue have been professionally examined, authenticated and described by Prof. Fillipo Salviati. Professor Salviati teaches Chinese and Korean art at Sapienza University in Rome, in the Italian Institute of Oriental Studies. He is a world expert on archaic Chinese jades, having released multiple publications and being cited by renowned auction houses such as Sotheby’s.

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Galerie Zacke
Mariahilferstrasse 112
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Austria
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Preview26.09.2017 - 28.09.2017
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