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Tinderbox with dragons
Place of Origin: China
Historical Period: Qing dynasty (1644-1911), Reign of the Qianlong emperor (1736-1795)
Materials: Ivory
Dimensions: W. 2 7/8 in x L. 3 in, W. 7.3 cm x L. 7.6 cm
Credit Line: Bequest of Isabella M. Cowell
Department: Chinese Art
Collection: Decorative Arts
Object Number: B81M45
On Display: No

Description

Label:

清朝乾楺玟牙筄恳教子火汴睵

HIDDEN MEANING: May your son become a high official (canglong jiaozi 筄恳教子

The old and young dragon on this imperial tinderbox suggests the phrase "the old dragon teaches its young." This motif, similar to the sculpture of the two fish in this exhibition, conveys a wish for an official position to pass from one generation to the next. For an emperor it would have conveyed the wish that the crown prince would follow his footsteps.


More Information

Exhibition History: "Chinese Ivories from the Shang to the Qing", The British Museum, 5/24/1984 - 8/19/1984
"Ivory: A Symbol of Excellence", The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, de Young Museum, 10/4/1990 - 1/6/1991
Hidden Meanings: Symbolism in Chinese Imperial Arts, October 7- December 31, 2006
Label:

清朝乾楺玟牙筄恳教子火汴睵

HIDDEN MEANING: May your son become a high official (canglong jiaozi 筄恳教子

The old and young dragon on this imperial tinderbox suggests the phrase "the old dragon teaches its young." This motif, similar to the sculpture of the two fish in this exhibition, conveys a wish for an official position to pass from one generation to the next. For an emperor it would have conveyed the wish that the crown prince would follow his footsteps.


Exhibition History: "Chinese Ivories from the Shang to the Qing", The British Museum, 5/24/1984 - 8/19/1984
"Ivory: A Symbol of Excellence", The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, de Young Museum, 10/4/1990 - 1/6/1991
Hidden Meanings: Symbolism in Chinese Imperial Arts, October 7- December 31, 2006
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