Chinese Jade Carving, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1983, cat. no. 139.
Chinese Jade Animals, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1996, cat. no. 92.
This finely carved and polished figure is an excellent example of the Song carver's ability to observe and sensitively render the innate nature of their subject. For examples of ram figures lying recumbent with their heads turned inward, see one sold in these rooms, 20th November 1984, lot 540; another, from the Katchen collection, sold in our London rooms, 14th December 1971, lot 46; and a third example from the Shuisongshi Shanfang Collection, included in the exhibition Exquisite Jade Carving, The University Museum and Art Gallery, Hong Kong, 1996, cat. no. 81.
The ram is symbolic of peace, prosperity and filial piety. Figures of rams have had a long history, appearing in the Han and Tang periods as lamps and in ceramic as tomb figures.
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