A rare and unusually large bronze (copper / tin alloy) sculpture of Shou Lao (also known as Shou Xing) the Chinese Daoist Star God of Longevity.
This item was made in China in the 16th or early 17th Century during the late Ming dynasty. It is mounted on a later 19th or early 20th Century carved hardwood stand.
This figure was originally made as the cover to a censer (incense burner) the smoke escaping through his open smiling mouth.
Shoulao form censers are usually mounted on a standing deer. However the posture of this figure plus the fact that he is holding a staff suggest that this Shouxing was originally seated on a recumbant deer or was mounted on a rock form base.
Provenence: This sculpture is part of a collection of bronzes which was assembled by a British architect who lived and worked in Shanghai during the early years of the 20th Century.. He left China in 1931 or 1932 and settled in North West England. We are selling this item on behalf of the Gentleman's Grand daughter.
Condition: there are minor old bumps and surface wear; the tips of his right hand's little finger and index finger are missing as is the top of his 19th Century replacement wooden staff. This figure is in remarkably good condition with no significant damages or losses.
38cm (15 inches) high.