A conglomerate agate carved 'petrified wood' snuff bottle
Qing dynasty, 1800-1900 The stone worked naturalistically in the form of a persimmon fruit with a four-leafed calyx foot, the body revealing the juicy interior by utilising natural variations of colours and texture, the skin further worked in resemblance of smaller persimmons, a cicada skifully carved on the side of the body. 5.7cm high.
Exhibited: Chinese Snuff Bottles, jointly presented by Hong Kong Chinese Snuff Bottle Collectors Study Group and the Urban Council, Hong Kong, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 15 October to 26 November 1977
Illustrated: Chinese Snuff Bottles, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1977, p.90, pl.207
Traditionally, the term persimmon is a homophone of shi, which translates as 'market' or 'business'. While a single cicada is commonly related to the phrase yiming jingren, which describes a person who becomes successful within a very short period of time, a golden cicada can be interpreted as a desire for renovation. It is an excellent example of a craftsman's attempt in combining the two aforementioned elements and delivering it in the form of a snuff bottle.
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