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At A Glance

  • Period

    4th-3rd century BCE
  • Geography

    Changsha, Hunan province, China
  • Material

  • Dimension

    Diam x D: 16.5 x 0.9 cm (6 1/2 x 3/8 in)
  • Accession Number



Object Details

  • Description

    Mirror, patinated in shades of gray with slight incrustations of malachite and rust on the obverse; 5 long-necked birds in linear relief against a background of curl and feather design in one zone on the reverse.
  • Provenance

    Excavated at Ch’ang-sha, Hunan Province in July 1937. [1]
    To 1941
    John Hadley Cox (1913-2005), Cambridge, Massachusetts. [2]
    From 1941
    Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from John Hadley Cox, Cambridge, Massachusetts. [3]
    [1] See Mr. Cox’s letter from October 3, 1940, object folder, undated folder sheet note 2. According to Mr. Cox’s letter, "The mirror was excavated at Ch'ang-sha, Hunan Province, in July of 1937.
    The tomb was of deep shaft construction of the type briefly described in the brochure published by the Associates in Fine Arts at Yale University at the time of the exhibition of the Ch'ang-sha antiquities.” See also Curatorial Remark 2 in the object record.
    [2] Curatorial Remark 1 in the object record.
    [3] See note 2.
  • Collection

    Freer Gallery of Art Collection
  • Exhibition History

    Chinese Art (February 18, 1983 to April 1, 1987)
    Chinese Art (March 15, 1982 to June 15, 1982)
    Chinese Art of the Warring States Period: Change and Community, 480-222 B.C. (September 30, 1982 to February 17, 1983)
    Chinese Art (January 1, 1963 to March 6, 1981)
    Chinese Bronze, Jade, Metalwork (March 1, 1957 to January 1, 1963)
    Centennial Exhibition, Galleries 14 and 15 (February 25, 1956 to March 1, 1957)
    Untitled Exhibition, Chinese Metalwork and Painting, East Corridor (February 15, 1955 to August 26, 1955)
    Special Mirror Exhibition (November 16, 1954 to February 25, 1955)
    Untitled Exhibition, Ancient Chinese Art, 1946 (May 7, 1946 to February 25, 1956)
    Untitled Exhibition, Chinese Art, 1944 (November 15, 1944 to May 6, 1946)
    Untitled Exhibition, Ancient Chinese Art, 1943 (March 22, 1943 to November 17, 1944)
    Stone Sculpture, Buddhist Bronze, and Chinese Painting (May 2, 1923 to February 25, 1956)
  • Previous custodian or owner

    John Hadley Cox (1913-2005)
  • Origin

    Changsha, Hunan province, China
  • Credit Line

    Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
  • Type

  • Restrictions and Rights

    Usage Conditions Apply

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