Historical period(s)
Northern Qi or Northern Zhou dynasty, 6th century
Earthenware clay with copper-green lead-silicate glaze
H x W: 60 x 30.2 cm (23 5/8 x 11 7/8 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Ceramic, Vessel


China, earthenware, lion, Northern Qi dynasty (550 - 577), Northern Zhou dynasty (557 - 581)

To 1930
C.T. Loo & Company, New York. [1]

From 1930
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from C.T. Loo & Company, New York. [2]


[1] Curatorial Remark 1 in the object record.

[2] See note 1.

Previous Owner(s)

C.T. Loo & Company active 1908-1950


This long-necked jar belongs to a group of funerary vessels of northern provenance. Unlike Han dynasty lead-glazed burial pieces, it served a Buddhist function. The appliques of monster masks, rosettes and lozenges with beaded borders reflect Central Asian, specifically Khotanese, influence. The tall, splayed base support, which lends the jar a decidedly more attenuated shape, has parallels in ceramics recently unearthed in China. The tall neck and trefoil mouth typical of West Asian metal ewers and bottles are unusual features and suggest that foreign metal vessels served as prototypes.

Published References
  • Hai wai i chen (Chinese Art in Overseas Collections). Taipei, 1985. vol. 3, p. 55.
  • Thomas Dexel. Fruhe Keramik in China: Die Entwicklung der Hauptformen vom Neolithikum bis in die T'ang-Zeit. Braunschweig, Germany. pl. 70a.
  • Warren E. Cox. The Book of Pottery and Porcelain. 2 vols., New York. p. 117, pl. 32.
  • Mrs. Hin-cheung Lovell. Some Northern Chinese Wares of the Sixth and Seventh Centuries. vol. 21, no. 4, Winter 1975. pp. 328-343, fig. 25.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum