This pair of Chinese Seated Lions date from the 17th -19th Century or possibly a bit earlier.
These pottery or earthenware lions each measure about 9.5 - 10 inches tall by 6 inches wide by about 4 inches in depth.
They are in very good condition with only a small loss to one of the tails.
This museum quality silvered bronze Nepalese or Sino-Tibetan figure of Tara (also known as Kuan Yin or Guanyin) dates to the 14th to 15th century or earlier.
It stands 10 1/2 inches tall by 3 inches in diameter.
It has exquisite details and very subtle modeling.
It is in excellent condition and retains much of it's original silver finish.
A similar example can be seen in "Oriental Art: India, Nepal & Tibet" by Michael Ridley, 1970, Plate 37 (listed as 14th Century or earlier).
This 19th century Japanese carved ivory okimono measures approximately 9 inches tall by 2 1/2 inches in diameter at it's widest point.
It is intricately carved with fully delineated scales and teeth on the fish. The figure riding a fish is carved from one solid walrus tusk and it sits on a separate oval section as a base. The crystalline pattern that is so indicative of walrus ivory can be seen in many places on the carving, including Kinko's robe (interior front left) and the belly of the carp or koi.
It dates from the Meiji Period in Japan (circa 1870-1900).
It is in very good condition with some stabilized antique ivory fractures as are seen on many of these okimonos that are well over 100 years old.
Japan originally imported and adapted many Taoist and Buddhist teachings from China, which were then combined with native Shinto beliefs.
One Taoist figure incorporated into Japanese artwork was Kinko, a holy hermit. He is often depicted mounted on the enormous carp that carried him to the Undersea Kingdom. There, sea creatures taught him that all life is sacred.
In Japan the carp (koi) is also a symbol of persistence, longevity, and fertility. Land-locked farmers have kept carp in their ponds to provide food for centuries and also bred them for their beautiful colors.
This standing nephrite jade carving of a bearded and robed figure with long horns or a headdress of some sort measures about 10 1/2 inches tall by 3 inches wide by 1 1/2 inches in depth.
It is carved from a large piece of nephrite ranging from pale to deep green with a strip of oxidized white to yellow jade down the middle. In addition, there is a crackled stripe of oxidation running down through the center of the face through the figure to the bottom of the robe.
There are also engraved rectangular patterns and additional patterns on the robe.
Although the serious possibility exists that this is an old nephrite carving dating to the Shang period, we are dating this one very conservatively to about circa 1900-1920. If it turns out to be much older, we are certain the buyer will not be too upset.
It is interesting to note, however, that the oxidation and subsequent crackling of the stone that runs right down through the face probably occurred after the jade was carved. The question arises: if this is a copy made in the last 100 years or so, why didn't they turn it around before they carved the face, as the center of the back side is pristine where the face could have been positioned, no crackling or deterioration? It would have been the better choice to use as the front and would have made a more attractive and potentially more saleable copy. If however, the deterioration of the stone actually happened over an extended period of time after it was carved, that would make more sense as an explanation as to why the current positioning of the stone in relation to it's natural flaws or irregularities.
This fine bronze ewer or kettle (aftaba) dates to the 18th Century in Wughal India.
It is of typical form and good weight. It measures: height: 26cm, width: 24cm.
It has a prominent faceted spout along with its original lid with a bud-like finial, an 'S' shaped handle which has a stylized lion head at one end and a lotus bud finial at the other. It stands on four short feet.
The flattened, globular pear shaped body tapers to a long neck. The body has been cast with raised cloud or foliage borders to the top and bottom, The design work on the body is of better quality than usually seen. The body, lid and spout have been engraved overall with repeated stylized vegetable or poppy motifs. The lid has similar patterns.
Ewers of this type originated in Persia and the Middle East. Typical Islamic ewers comprised a central chamber to which a spout, foot, handle and neck were attached. They permitted water to flow - notations in the Koran described flowing water as 'clean'.
Ewers were introduced to India by Muslim invaders during the late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries. Later Indian inspired designs became more curvaceous and many were decorated with lush plant and floral motifs.
In India, local Muslims used such vessels for hand washing. They became a practical tool of hospitality, being used to welcome visitors by pouring scented water over the hands and feet and into a basin, and took on a great variety of shapes and types whilst adhering to the basic ewer form.
This example is in excellent condition. There are no repairs, splits or dents. as mentioned, the lid is original – usually the lid is missing or replaced.
A slightly larger (39.4 cm tall) sold at Sotheby's on October 5, 2011 for 6250 British pounds( $9784.00 in US dollars) (lot 265) . It had much less surface detailing. ( http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2011/arts-of-the-islamic-world/lot.265.html )
Provenance: The southern California art market prior to 1980.
Reference: Zebrowski, M., Gold, Silver & Bronze from Mughal India, Alexandria Press, 1997.
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This original Ming Dynasty ceramic or stoneware tile with a figure of a seated Buddha measures about 6 3/4 x 9 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches.
It is in very good condition with minor losses to the glaze in a few areas along with a few small rim chips.
Stylistically, it has more in common with Song Dynasty ceramics, but most likely it dates to the Ming Dynasty.
This architectural tile appears to have been designed to be mounted in the wall of a shrine or temple and has a pattern of large shaped dovetails on the reverse for that purpose (see enlargement photo).
This museum quality piece consists of very dense stoneware covered with colored glazes in turquoise, aubergine and yellow.
This Buddha tile dates from the Ming Dynasty or earlier.
A Few Facts:
The Shanyin Hall at the White Dagoba Temple was built or restored by the Qianlong emperor in 1751, 30 years after a large earthquake damaged the same area in Beijing.
Shanyin Hall currently has 445 Buddha tiles of similar style, but of later manufacture (probably circa 1976 -when it was last restored after the Tangshan earthquake.) (See the last photograph).
It may have have had tiles similar to the one we are offering prior to it's previous restorations in 1751 or 1976.
It is quite possible that this turquoise Buddha tile may be a remnant of one of those earlier changes or restorations.
We currently have in our collection a tile similar to the current tiles that are currently mounted in Shanyin Hall in Beijing. Our tile is marked with Wanli reign Marks (1573- 1619). This is not the tile we are offering with this lot. The one we are offering actually appears to be earlier than this Wanli tile, but it is unmarked.
We can't document it yet, but it is a serious possibility that this old Buddha tile dates to before 1619.
Our research shows that the original tiles were probably held in place with lime mortar-not the best thing to use in an earthquake zone.
This tile we offer here may have been salvaged from an old temple restoration or from a temple no longer in existence. This same area has seen earthquakes in 1679, again in 1730 and again in 1976-to name a few.
All of this is a combination of verifiable facts and speculation, but speculation based on observable and documented facts.
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This outstanding quality Ding Yao covered ceramic box, although Song Dynasty in appearance, may actually date from the Ming or Ching Dynasty.
It measures 8 inches in diameter by about 3 inches in height.
The domed cover is incised with repeating leaf patterns around a central leaf set within a circle.
It is in excellent condition with a circular kiln fracture around the outside of the bottom rim (see enlargement photo). This is original to the piece and is not considered damage.
This blue & white ceramic bottle or jar measures 9 inches tall by 3 1/4 inches in diameter.
It is hand painted with scenes in cobalt blue on a white ground.
It is in excellent condition with a few natural fissures and irregularities to the glaze (see close up photos).
We estimate it to date circa 1700-1900.
This Japanese ceramic figure of Kannon measures 17 inches tall and about 6 inches in diameter at its widest point.
It has four incised marks on it's base, two Kutani marks and two potters mark (see closeup photo).
It dates to the Meiji Period in Japan. Kwannon is also known as Kannon or Kwan Yin and Guanyin in China.
It is in outstanding condition with no flaws, cracks, chips or losses.
This antique jade carving of a reclining ox or water buffalo measures 4 inches wide by 2.5 inches tall by about 2.5 inches in depth.
This classic jade is carved in the style of the Song Dynasty (980 AD -1279 AD), but it is more likely that it was carved during the Ming Dynasty (1368 AD - 1644 AD) or the Qing Dynasty (1644 AD-1911 AD).
It is in excellent condition with subtle details and carving.
This carving may have begun it's existence as a somewhat lighter-off white color, but time and oxidation have worked to give it a lovely pale yellow or honey color with subtle inclusions and minor color changes.
This is a museum quality nephrite jade carving which is evidenced by the subtle modeling of it's overall design. This one is a gem.
The next owner will not be disappointed!
This Meiji period JAPANESE KUTANI BOWL measures 10 1/2 inches in diameter and 4 inches deep.
It is in excellent condition with slight wear to the gilding as would be expected .
It is signed on the bottom (see enlargement).
Nepalese Bronze Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara Padmapani
11th to 14th century: circa 1000-1300 AD.
This outstanding bronze statue of the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara Padmapani stands 13.5 inches tall not including the two rectangular mounts that extend into it's bronze base.
It stands 15 inches tall including it's bronze lotus base.
It is in excellent condition with much of it's original gilt remaining on the raised areas and his face. The remainder of the original gilt has been lost over the last thousand years or so, exposing a deep copper colored bronze surface.
Among the many forms of Avalokiteshvara, Padmapani is probably the oldest.
Avalokiteshvara is the embodiment of all of the Buddha's infinite compassion.
Padmapani means "lotus in hand". His left hand holds the lotus stalk, while his right hand is lowered in the gesture of granting favors.
This is an early example the use of semi precious stone inlays, a distinctive feature of Tibetan and Nepali sculpture.
His smooth torso and broad shoulders reflect the impact of the Gupta style, which existed in Northern India from the fourth to sixth century. The armlets and crown are traditionally found on 10th to 12th century sculpture.
Additional Nepalese or Nepali scuptural traditions can be seen in the shape of the broad face and full cheekbones which differ from the smaller and fuller facial features found in Indian art. The curves of the eyebrows and eyes and the long line of the nose are also typically Nepalese in style. In addition, the delicately engraved or incised floral pattern of the sarong around his waist is also typically found on early Nepali sculptures .
A larger, but stylistically similar example of an 11th century bronze Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara Padmapani is held in the Cleveland Museum of Art:
On September 21, 2007 Christies NY sold a 14 inch gilt bronze Avalokitesvara Padmapani for $577,000.00 .
Recently - On March 20, 2012, a 17 7/8 inch tall bronze Padmapani was sold for $2.8 million dollars by Christies Auction House in New York.
THIS IS A MUSEUM QUALITY BRONZE AND IT IS GUARANTEED TO BE AS DESCRIBED, WITH NO EXCEPTIONS.
This ancient marble carving of a reclining lion measures 6 1/2 inches wide by 5 inches in depth by 4 1/2 inches high.
It dates to either the Tang Dynasty in China (618 AD 907 AD) or slightly earlier in one of the Roman provinces ( possibly 300-400 AD). It is in excellent condition and quite rare.
This extremely old hardstone / jade bracelet dates from the Liangzhu Period (3300 BC-2200 BC).
It is a varigated black color with one spot of pale yellow green on the interior.
It is in excellent condition, even though its material has been been degraded over time (The scratch test only works on the green spot due to the degradation of the darker areas). It also has a crystal structure that can be seen under high magnification.
It has an outside diameter of 3 1/4 - 3 1/2 inches (8.5- 9 cm) and an interior diameter of 2 5/8 inches (6.6 cm). It is about 3/4 inch in width (1.8 - 2.0 cm). This is an outstanding piece and is similar in style to another burnt jade bangle of white chicken bone color in published works.
Pair of Imperial Bronze Dragon Seals: Qianlong Marks and Period
This large pair of dragon handled bronze seals date from the period of Qianlong (1735-1795), emperor of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) in China.
The rectangular base measures 8 ½ inches by 7 ¼ inches (21.5 cm x 19.5 cm). The dragon handle stands up about 3 inches tall (8 cm.).
The top portions of the seals are covered with chiseled and engraved patterns of dragons and swirling lines representing the ocean or the sky. Standing on top of all this is the dragon handle.
The bottom of the seals are covered in archaic old Chinese pictogram script (see closeup photos). They also include traditional Chinese characters in one corner which are easily interpreted as Qianlong Reign Marks.
Some folks thought these might be paperweights because of their rather large size, compared to most seals of either bronze or jade. A recent article in the Jakarta Post referred to a very similar bronze seal as a “casted paperweight from the Qianlong Period”. See link below:
( http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2011/04/04/scholar-objects-undervalued-small-treasures.html )
These bronzes may have served double duty, with an original purpose yet to be determined by deciphering the archaic script and the possibility of also having been used as massive scroll weights.
The Emperor Qianlong had a serious interest in painting and was known to dabble in it himself on occasion. Some scrolls are exceptionally long and might have required a substantial scroll weight to keep them open for viewing (or possible two or more to hold the whole long thing open in the privacy of one's palace).
On April 4, 2010 , one identical bronze seal/scroll weight was sold at auction in China for the amount of RMB 651,200. (about $108,000.00 US ). The auction estimate had originally been 600,000-800,000 RMB (about $100,000-$130,000) for one single bronze seal.
The pair of bronze seals or scroll weights or “paperweights” are both in excellent condition. The buyer will not be disappointed.
They were purchased about 30 years ago in Southern California.
NOTE: Although the photos below make the the bronzes appear to be of different sizes , only the photos are of different sizes, not the bronzes themselves.
ADDITIONAL NOTE: THERE ARE A FEW VERY TINY SPOTS OF VERDIGRIS ON ONE OF THE SEALS . THIS IS NOT UNUSUAL FOR A BRONZE ITEM THAT IS OVER 200 YEARS OLD. IT IS REALLY NOT WORTH MENTIONING BUT WE ALWAYS LIKE TO HAVE FULL DISCLOSURE SO THERE ARE NO SURPRISES FOR THE BUYER.
This antique bronze head of Kandoba or Shiva with a Naga canopy dates from 18th century India (Rajastan).
This may also be known as a Muhkalinga.
It measures approximately 10 inches (24 cm) tall and 5 inches (12 cm) in diameter.
This is a very substantial old bronze in both weight and appearance and it is in excellent condition.
This original, signed painting on wooden panel measures 17 1/2 inches by 18 inches (44cm x 46 cm) not including the ornately carved wooden frame it sits in. With frame, it measures 23 1/2 by 24 inches.
The subject of the painting is two samurai with drawn blades.
It is signed on both the front and reverse of the painting. There is also an additional hand painted seal in the upper right corner.
We date this painting to the late Meiji Period, although it is quite possible that it could be much earlier.
The condition of the painting is very good, but there are a few minor scrapes to the soft wood evident in the picture, but only from a certain angle. They really do not detract from the charm of this outstanding work.
Last, but not least, the frame is an amazing example of wood carving, and in outstanding condition.