Antique Asian Works of Art from Ancient East

Chinese Staghorn Archer’s Ring, Qing

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Chinese: Scholar Art: Pre 1910: Item # 1362963

Please refer to our stock # SAO218 when inquiring.
Ancient East
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369 Montezuma Ave., #562
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2626

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DESCRIPTION: A finely carved Chinese staghorn archer's ring, probably 19th C., of cylindrical form with a luscious, aged patina. Around the outside circumference a lucky bat is shown flying with a tasseled string of coins in its mouth, signifying luck and prosperity for the wearer. DIMENSIONS: 1 3/8" high (3 cm) x 1 3/8" diameter (3 cm); weight 21 g.

HISTORY: Archer's rings originated very early in Chinese history. Because Chinese archers typically used the thumb to draw and release their bow strings, they often required thumb protection in the form of a ring or leather guard. In historical times, thumb ring materials included jade, metal, ivory, horn and bone. By the Song and Ming Dynasties, these beautiful rings evolved into status symbols for men of social rank, such as scholars and officials, denoting the individual's higher status.