Axe (fu 斧)

Object of thin, rectangular axe head shape, of the type fu 斧 or yueh [yue] 鉞; large circular perforation bored from both sides leaving sharp median ridge; one surface mottled yellow, orange, and reddish to dark browns with traces of silvery film; opposite surface is mottled olive greens, gray, cream, and black. (Corner and blade chipped.)

Acquired with a box, now lost.

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Maker(s)
Artist: Liangzhu culture 良渚 (ca. 3300-ca. 2250 BCE)
Historical period(s)
Late Neolithic period, ca. 3300-2250 BCE
Medium
Jade (nephrite)
Dimensions
H x W x D: 10.7 × 8.9 × 0.7 cm (4 3/16 × 3 1/2 × 1/4 in) Diam (hole): 2.7 cm (1 1/16 in)
Geography
China, Lake Tai region, but purportedly found at Xi’an, Shaanxi
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1917.379
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceremonial Object, Jade
Type

Ceremonial object: axe

Keywords
China, Late Neolithic period (ca. 5000 - ca. 1700 BCE), nephrite, Western Zhou dynasty (ca. 1050 - 771 BCE)
Provenance

Reportedly excavated at Hsi-an, Shensi [1]

To 1917
You Xiaoxi (late 19th-early 20th century), Shanghai, to 1917 [2]

From 1917 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from You Xiaoxi in 1917 [3]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [4]

Notes:

[1] According to Curatorial Remark 1 in the object record.

[2] See Original Miscellaneous List, S.I. 1319, pg. 301, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[3] See note 2.

[4] 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

Object of thin, rectangular axe head shape, of the type fu 斧 or yueh [yue] 鉞; large circular perforation bored from both sides leaving sharp median ridge; one surface mottled yellow, orange, and reddish to dark browns with traces of silvery film; opposite surface is mottled olive greens, gray, cream, and black. (Corner and blade chipped.)

Acquired with a box, now lost.

Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Jades for Life and Death
Google Cultural Institute
CC0 - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

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