A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand)
Lot 139*
A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover Qianlong
£80,000 - 120,000
US$ 130,000 - 200,000
Auction Details
A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand) A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand) A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand) A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand) A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover, Qianlong (wood stand)
Lot Details
A rare white jade 'sanyang' incense burner and cover
Qianlong
Crisply and exquisitely carved from white jade, the censer with a decorative band around the body containing stylised archaistic scrolls divided by six columns of low flanges, three ending in an animal-head foot, the censer with two handles each formed as a bird facing outwards with strongly-curving wings reaching back to the censer, the body ending in a bifurcated scroll, the cover similarly carved with a decorative band and flanges, beneath three elegant ram-heads, each with long ears and a pair of twisted horns, all surmounted by the reticulated finial carved with a front-facing dragon grasping the flaming pearl amid cloud scrolls, wood stand.
18cm (7in) wide (3).

Footnotes

  • 清乾隆 白玉雕三羊開泰紋雙耳蓋爐

    Provenance: Sotheby's London, 28th October 1983, lot 201
    Later acquired from Roger Keverne Ltd., London, on 27 October 1998
    A Western private collection

    來源:倫敦蘇富比,1983年10月28日,拍品編號201
    後來在1998年10月27日購於倫敦古董商Roger Keverne
    西方私人收藏

    The present white jade incense burner and cover is Imperial in its symbolic carving, from the exquisite dragon finial to the phoenix handles, traditionally associated with the Emperor and Empress respectively. For a similar pale green jade incense burner and cover, Qianlong, but without the sanyang and with tubular feet, in the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, see R. Lefebvre d'Argencé, Chinese Jades in the Avery Brundage Collection, San Francisco, 1977, pl.LIV.

    The rare incense burner is unusually carved in high relief on the cover with the san yang. The image of the sheep or goat, 羊 yang, appeared as early as the Han Dynasty as a pun for 祥 xiang meaning auspicious or lucky. By the Qing period, the image of sheep had become heavily associated with 陽 yang, meaning the sun, and the warm, positive or masculine force in Chinese cosmology.

    The sheep imagery then developed into three sheep, 三羊 sanyang, often with three boys 三陽 sanyang, as a reference to the favourable arrival of spring, since the phrase 三陽開泰 sanyang kai tai, refers to the period between the winter solstice and the New Year. This was the period when the warm yang energy is emergent, as detailed in the ancient Chinese classic the Yijing, or Book of Changes.
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