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Artwork Details

Qing dynasty, Yongzheng reign (1723 - 1735)
porcelain with glaze
4 1/2 in. (11.43 cm)
Promised gift of William C. Weese, M.D., LSA ‘65

On Display

Not currently on display


Subject Matter:

Qilin, Wade-Giles ch't-lin, in Chinese mythology, the unicorn whose rare appearance often coincides with the imminent birth or death of a sage or illustrious ruler. (The name is a combination of the two characters qi “male,” and lin, “female.”) A qilin has a single horn on its forehead, a yellow belly, a multicoloured back, the body of a deer, and the tail of an ox. Gentle of disposition, it never walks on verdant grass or eats living vegetation.
The first qilin is said to have appeared in the garden of the legendary Huangdi (Yellow Emperor) in 2697 BCE. Some three centuries later a pair of qilin were reported in the capital of Emperor Yao. Both events bore testimony to the benevolent nature of the rulers.

Physical Description:

A pale green, square base, expanding at the sides sides, with a Qilin on the top portion. There is a Yongzhen reign mark.

Usage Rights:

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