94
94
A very rare small inscribed bronze ritual bell
mark and period of Kangxi, dated 1666 AD
Estimate
10,00015,000
LOT SOLD. 114,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
94
A very rare small inscribed bronze ritual bell
mark and period of Kangxi, dated 1666 AD
Estimate
10,00015,000
LOT SOLD. 114,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

The Concordia House Collection: Fine Chinese Jades and Important Works of Art from a Midwestern Family

|
New York

A very rare small inscribed bronze ritual bell
mark and period of Kangxi, dated 1666 AD
the robust bulging 'drum' form, cast in high relief with a central register of two large striding five-clawed dragons separated by inscriptions within rectangular cartouches, between a border of detached cloud scrolls and a band of eight raised discs reserved against clouds around the base, the flat top surmounted by thick addorsed double-dragons forming the suspension loop, the bronze of deep reddish-brown tone
8 in., 20.3 cm
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Catalogue Note

The inscriptions on either side read Kangxi wu nian zao, corresponding to the year 1666 AD, and Zhong lu, which possibly indicates a classical pitch.   

The present bell is rare in that it is decorated with striding dragons and cloud scrolls, and also represents one of the earliest examples of bells of this type.  Compare a similar bell with dragons on the sides, but dated to the 55th year of the Kangxi reign (corresponding to 1716 AD), which was included in the exhibition Treasures from the Palace Museum, Tokyo, 1982, cat.no. 3.

Related bells of similar form and handle are usually cast with alternating bosses and trigrams as opposed to dragons in relief found on the present piece.  Bells of this form are dated to different years of Kangxi’s reign and are believed to have come from a set made for the Temple of Agriculture at Beijing.  See, for example, one dated 1713 AD, sold at Sotheby’s Country House Sale at Easton Neston, Northamptonshire, England, 18th May 2005, lot 762; and two sets of five bells dated 1714 and 1716 AD from the C. Ruxton and Audrey B. Love collection, sold at Christie's New York, 20th October 2004, lots 455 and 456, respectively.  Compare also two bells sold in these roms, one from the Allen J. Mercher collection, 1st November 1956, lot 40; and the other from the J. Piermont Morgan collection, lot 41.  Another Kangxi bell of the same pattern is illustrated in Zhongguo meishu quanji, vol. 10, Beijing, 1987, pl. 176; and a complete carillon of similar bells dated 1713 AD were included in the exhibition, La Cité interdite; Vie publique et privée des empereurs de Chine (1644-1911), Musée du Petit Palais, Paris, 1996, pp. 170-1.

The Concordia House Collection: Fine Chinese Jades and Important Works of Art from a Midwestern Family

|
New York