Tomb figure of a man on horseback

Historical period(s)
Tang dynasty, ca. 700-750
Earthenware with lead-silicate glazes and painted details
H x W x D: 39.5 x 11.7 x 34 cm (15 9/16 x 4 5/8 x 13 3/8 in)
China, Henan province, Possibly Luoyang
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Ceramic, Sculpture

Tomb figure: horse and rider

China, earthenware, funerary, horse, man, Tang dynasty (618 - 907), tomb, WWII-era provenance

To 1948
Jun Tsei Tai (1911-1992), Shanghai, to February 1948 [1]

From 1948 to 1952
C.T. Loo & Company, New York, purchased from Jun Tsei Tai in February 1948 [2]

From 1952
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from C. T. Loo & Company on June 25, 1952 [3]


[1] See C. T. Loo's stockcard no. 46077: "Pottery equestrian statuette of a horse and rider, wearing a hea[r]t shaped hat, wide sleeved green coat, black boots, astride on a greenish creamy Alzan with large brownish splashes, trimmed mane and tail Central Asia, T'ang, Ht: 15 ¾ in. Length: 15 in," C.T. Loo & Frank Caro Archive, Musée Guimet, Paris, copy in object file. According to an annotation on the stockcard, the object was acquired in China from J. T. Tai in February 1948. According to some sources, the object belonged to a group of sixteen equestrian figures reportedly excavated from a tomb at Luoyang, Henan province prior to 1943, see Christie's, New York, Fine Chinese Ceramics, Jades and Works of Art, auction cat. (New York: June 4, 1987), under lot 195 and Annette L. Juliano, Bronze, Clay and Stone: Chinese Art in the C. C. Wang Family Collection (Seattle and London: University of Washington Press, 1988), under cat. no. 54.

[2] See Loo's stockcard cited above. The object was transferred to the Freer Gallery in April 1948, see C. T. Loo's Approval Memorandum, dated April 14, 1948, copy in object file. In the memorandum, Loo stated that the object was excavated in Sian Fu [Xi'an], Shaanxi province.

[3] See C. T. Loo's invoice, dated June 25, 1952.

Previous Owner(s)

Jun Tsei Tai 1911-1992
C.T. Loo & Company 1914-1948

Published References
  • Chang Wanli. Tang san cai you tao (Three-Colour Glaze Pottery of the T'ang Dynasty). 3 vols., Hong Kong. pl. 34.
  • Harriet E. Baker. The Horse Motif in China. vol. 2, no. 3 Los Angeles, October 1961. p. 23, fig. 5.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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