Forked blade (zhang 璋)

Green black. Blade slightly narrows toward the center and widens at the two-pronged tip. Tip sharpened to a fine edge. One side of the blade is flat, the other almost imperceptibly concave. Surface slightly pitted, nicked in one place that appears to have been buffed down. One tip of cutting edge broken off and old breaks at handle and on both projections.

Maker(s)
Artist: Longshan culture 龍山 (ca. 3000-ca. 1700 BCE)
Historical period(s)
Late Neolithic period, ca. 3000-1700 BCE
Medium
Jade (nephrite)
Dimensions
H x W x D: 37.3 x 6.6 x 0.7 cm (14 11/16 x 2 5/8 x 1/4 in)
Geography
China, probably Shaanxi province, Shenmu Shimao
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
S1987.451
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceremonial Object, Jade
Type

Ceremonial object: forked blade (zhang)

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

To 1959
Abel William Bahr (1877-1959), Shanghai, China, London, England, Montreal, Canada, New York, NY, and Ridgefield, Connecticut [1]

From 1963 to 1987
Arthur M. Sackler, New York, purchased from the Bahr Collection in 1963 [2]

From 1987
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, gift of Arthur M. Sackler on September 11, 1987 [3]

Notes:

[1] According to information provided by the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation, October 9, 2009.

[2] See #11: "Green black. One tip of cutting edge broken off and old breaks at handle and on both projections," on list provided by the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation, October 9, 2009, copy in object file.

[3] Pursuant to the agreement between Arthur M. Sackler and the Smithsonian Institution, dated July 28, 1982, legal title of the donated objects was transferred to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery on September 11, 1987.

Previous Owner(s)

Abel William Bahr 1877-1959
Dr. Arthur M. Sackler 1913-1987

Description

Green black. Blade slightly narrows toward the center and widens at the two-pronged tip. Tip sharpened to a fine edge. One side of the blade is flat, the other almost imperceptibly concave. Surface slightly pitted, nicked in one place that appears to have been buffed down. One tip of cutting edge broken off and old breaks at handle and on both projections.

Published References
  • J. Keith Wilson, Jingmin Zhang. Jades for Life and Death. .
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Jades for Life and Death
Google Cultural Institute
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