THE BI-WHEEL AS A SYMBOL OF THE UNIVERSE, A COUNTERPART TO THE BI-DISC IN THE KING'S TOMB OF NANYUE

Starting price:€2 400
Auction date:28.04.2017   15:00
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Lot 65THE BI-WHEEL AS A SYMBOL OF THE UNIVERSE, A COUNTERPART TO THE BI-DISC IN THE KING'S TOMB OF NANYUE
THE BI-WHEEL AS A SYMBOL OF THE UNIVERSE, A COUNTERPART TO THE BI-DISC IN THE KING'S TOMB OF NANYUE
Jade
China
Late Eastern Zhou to Western Han, 3. to 2. Century. Before
DM. 16.2 CM, INNER LENGTH OF ABOUT 3.1 CM,THICKNESS 4 MM
玉璧。中國,西漢代,公元前3-2世紀。外直徑16.2厘米,內直徑3.1厘米。厚約0.4厘米。維也納私人舊藏。

This Bi is provided on both sides with a very finely milled Relief from the type of “Körndelmuster”, Guwen. The cut is exactly straight, intersecting lines that give each "Körndel" a diamond. As a Bi-disc is a Symbol of heaven and of the universe, symbolizes this Guwen the star world, the diversity of which was certainly over a thousand of the tiny "Körndel". The small inner diameter and the associated broadening of the area reinforce this suggestive effect. The image is almost revived authenticity faithfully by whitish cloudy fields, which appear as passing Clouds. Otherwise, the color is yellow, more reddish on the long-term storage in loess. Outer and inner margins are straight and smooth edged. Age-related weathering in the exposed border areas, overall good complete preservation of integrity.

This Jade is published in the book of FILIPPO SALVIATI: “THE MYSTERIOUS STONE: Chinese Jades from the Neolithic to the Han in private collections” (publication date spring 2017).

Notes by Prof. Salviati: Both surfaces of this disc are decorated with a pattern of hexagon-like bumps, a motif which is ultimately derived from the curls and scrolls that were used to decorate the Eastern Zhou jades since the 5th century BC. The jade is pale green with extensive brown areas due to prolonged burial. Search discs were probably crafted solely for burial purposes and were placed in the tomb on the body of the deceased or on the coffin. Similar discs from excavations include a few from the 2nd century BC tomb of Zhao Mo, the King of Nanyue in Guangzhou. One of these, large and with a small hole such as the present Lot, was found placed on the chest inside the jade shroud which covered the body of the king: thirteen more discs of decreasing size were arranged in rows, over and along the body. In museum collections, similar discs from the sunshine collection are in The Art Institute, Chicago: they are published in A. Salmony, Archaic Chinese Jades, Chicago, 1952, pl.68:1 and 69:1.

Expertise: Wolfmar Zacken & Filippo Salviati
From A Viennese Collection
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Preview26.04.2017 - 28.04.2017
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