Dagger-axe (ge) inlaid with turquoise

Historical period(s)
Shang dynasty, ca. 1600-1050 BCE
Bronze and turquoise
H x W x D: 39.4 x 9.9 x 1 cm (15 1/2 x 3 7/8 x 3/8 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Metalwork, Weapon and Armament

Ritual object

casting, China, Shang dynasty (ca. 1600 - ca. 1050 BCE), WWII-era provenance

Reportedly excavated in Anyang, Henan province, China [1]

From at least 1938 to 1939
C.T. Loo & Company, New York from at least December 3, 1938 [2]

From 1939
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from C.T. Loo & Company on July 6, 1939 [3]


[1] According to C. T. Loo & Co., An Exhibition of Chinese Bronzes, exh. cat. (New York: C. T. Loo & Co., January 1939), cat. 43, pl. XIX.

[2] See "List of objects owned by C. T. Loo and Company, New York…[and] left by Mr. Loo on December 10, 1938 at the Gallery for examination," with an annotation that the object was taken back by Loo on December 23, 1938, copy in object file; it was returned to the Freer Gallery at the end of next month, see "List of objects owned by C. T. Loo and Co., New York [and left] at the Gallery for examination," with an annotation that the object was brought by Frank Caro on January 31, 1939, copy in object file. See also Loo's stockcard no. 81439: "Two bronze daggers with malachite inlay. Shan-Yin," Frank Caro Archive, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, copy in object file.

[3] See C. T. Loo's invoice, dated July 6, 1939, copy in object file.

Previous Owner(s)

C.T. Loo & Company active 1908-1950

Published References
  • Sueji Umehara. Kanan Anyo ibutsu no kenkyu (Study of Relics from Anyang). Kyoto. pl. 37.
  • J. LeRoy Davidson. An Exhibition of Chinese Bronzes. Exh. cat. New York. cat. 43, pl. 19.
  • Chugoku bijutsu (Chinese Art in Western Collections). 5 vols., Tokyo, 1972-1973. fig. 88b.
  • Sueji Umehara. On the Ancient Tombs Discovered at Hou-chia chung, Chang-te fu, Ho-nan sheng. no. 30. pp. 18-30, pl. 5.
  • compiled by the staff of the Freer Gallery of Art. A Descriptive and Illustrative Catalogue of Chinese Bronzes: Acquired During the Administration of John Ellerton Lodge. Oriental Studies Series, no. 3 Washington, 1946. p. 90, pl. 44.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum

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