A RARE GOLD AND SILVER-INLAID IRON BELT HOOK EASTERN ZHOU DYNASTY, WARRING STATES PERIOD |
8,000 - 12,000 USD
bidding is closed
- Length 5 1/2 in., 14.4 cm
of tapered rectangular form, set to the top with a small silver recumbent beast in high relief and four alternating gold and silver plaques, each meticulously decorated in relief with a pair of writhing, interlocking dragons, all against a ground of paired triangular geometric scroll patterns, the underside with a circular button
Collection of Stephen Junkunc, III (d. 1978).
The present belt hook is notable for its highly elaborate design and intricate metalworking techniques. The generous use of precious materials and the laborious workmanship necessary to make the complex decorations ensured that belt hooks of this type were reserved for the use of the nobility during the late Eastern Zhou dynasty. Compare two closely related belt hooks of this type, each also inset with jade plaques, excavated from Xinyang Chu tombs in Henan province, published in Henan Provincial Institute of Archaeology, ed., Xinyang Chumu [The Chu tombs in Xinyang], Beijing, 1986, pls 64 and 65; another illustrated in Max Loehr, Relics of Ancient China from the Collection of Dr. Paul Singer, New York, 1965, pl. 85-c; one in the Freer Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., illustrated in Thomas Lawton, Chinese Art of the Warring States Period: Change and Continuity, 480-222 B.C., Washington, D.C., 1982, pl. 51; and a fifth included in the exhibition Early Chinese Metalwork in Gold and Silver: Works of Art of the Ming and Qing Dynasties, Eskenazi, New York, 2011, cat. no. 1.