Thursday, May 23, 2013


Period: Western Zhou period.
Medium: Nephrite jade.
Colour: Yellow-green.
Dimensions: H. 28 cm.; W. 14.8 cm.; D. 9.5 cm.

This type of vessel is a copy of the large bronze wine storage vessels produced during the Shang and Zhou dynasties.  Lei could be round or quadrangular fang lei.

Flanges protrude vertically down the middle of each side of the vessel.  The lid is decorated with birds on the front and back.  The body has a band with a small animal mask with a bird on each side.  The main decoration on the body is a taoti mask.

The surface shows a great deal of alteration with raised crystals running in veins diagonally through the jade, with only a small area of the original yellow-green jade visible.