Qing dynasty, 1760-1860 Of baluster form with high shoulders, carved on one side with a mythical beast expelling a breath containing a sutra, the reverse with a horse expelling a taiji symbol, both treading on crashing waves. 6.6cm high.
The textual origin for the depiction of a horse spitting out a taiji can be traced back from one of the earliest extant books of Chinese divination, the Shang dynasty Yi Jing (I Ching). However, there have been no records for the primeval image, thus the current design is a pictorial representation from Confucian records on the ancient legendary diagram. Legends also associate the appearance of the qilin in the garden spitting out a jade book with the birth and death of Confucius.
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