Forked blade (zhang 璋)

Ceremonial implement of nephrite; slightly concave on both sides; lateral edges flare to form a sharp concave edge at the end, with a prominent lateral projection on each side above a perforated tang; longitudinal saw marks and roughly chipped end on handle; greenish black faintly mottled with lighter tone. (Slightly chipped.)

Acquired with a box, now lost.

(Jenny F. So, from Jade Project Database) Dark grayish olive “puddingstone.” Thick, with slightly concave surfaces on both faces. Asymmetrical curved top, beveled like “W” on one (“front”) face. Conical hole, drilled from face without beveled top. Slice mark runs lengthwise on front face, ending at base of tang. Blunt single notches on each side of base of blade.

Maker(s)
Artist: Longshan culture 龍山 (ca. 3000 - ca. 1700 BCE)
Historical period(s)
Late Neolithic period, ca. 2000-1700 BCE
Medium
Jade (nephrite)
Dimensions
H x W x D: 43.7 x 8.8 x 0.7 cm (17 3/16 x 3 7/16 x 1/4 in)
Geography
China, probably Shaanxi province, Shenmu Shimao
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number
F1916.491
On View Location
Freer Gallery 19: Afterlife: Ancient Chinese Jades
Classification(s)
Ceremonial Object, Jade
Type

Ceremonial object

Keywords
China, Late Neolithic period (ca. 5000 - ca. 1700 BCE), nephrite
Provenance

To 1916
You Xiaoxi, Shanghai, to 1916 [1]

From 1916 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from You Xiaoxi, in New York in 1916 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]

Notes:

[1] See Original Miscellaneous List, S.I. 1037, pg. 230, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[2] See note 1.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Previous Owner(s)

Charles Lang Freer 1854 - 1919
You Xiaoxi (C.L. Freer source) late 19th-early 20th century

Description

Ceremonial implement of nephrite; slightly concave on both sides; lateral edges flare to form a sharp concave edge at the end, with a prominent lateral projection on each side above a perforated tang; longitudinal saw marks and roughly chipped end on handle; greenish black faintly mottled with lighter tone. (Slightly chipped.)

Acquired with a box, now lost.

(Jenny F. So, from Jade Project Database) Dark grayish olive "puddingstone." Thick, with slightly concave surfaces on both faces. Asymmetrical curved top, beveled like "W" on one ("front") face. Conical hole, drilled from face without beveled top. Slice mark runs lengthwise on front face, ending at base of tang. Blunt single notches on each side of base of blade.

Published References
  • You Xiaoxi, Hsiao-chi Yu in, Chi-Tseng Chang. Masterpieces of Chinese National Art: The Collection of Mr. Seaouke'e Yue. Shanghai, 1916. no. 13.
  • Grace Dunham Guest Archibald Gibson Wenley. Annotated Outlines of the History of Chinese Arts. Washington, 1949. p. 6.
  • Minao Hayashi. Chūgoku kodai no ishibōchōkei gyokki to kotsusenkei gyokki (Two Types of Prehistorical Chinese Ceremonial Jade Objects: Stone Harvesting Knives and Bone Spades). No. 54, 1982. p. 54, fig. 59.
  • Minao Hayashi. Chūgoku kogyoku no kenkyū. Tokyo, 1991. p. 483, fig. 6: 88.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Jades for Life and Death
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum