The modeling of the body, particularly in the chest and the joints in the forelegs, closely follows Tang dynasty lions carved in limestone or marble. See for instance a small white marble carving of a lion, also from the collection of Stephen Junkunc III, sold at Christie's New York, 21st September 1995, lot 300; and a larger example, from the collection of Robert H. Ellsworth, sold at Christie's New York, 17th March 2015, lot 16. Similar in style is a puddingstone example in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (acc. no. 24.74).
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