Taoist Priest with Ritualistic Items
Item No. 16956
19th - 20th Century, Taoist / Popular Religions, China
Wood with Polychrome
10" x 3.75" x 3"
( 25.4 x 9.525 x 7.62 cm)
(H x W x D)
This well carved figure probably represents a Taoist priest holding a tael, or silver ingot representing the wish for bestowal of wealth in his right hand, and in the left a cup which probably represents an elixir associated with health and longevity. He is seated on a backless chair with a high pedestal which originally contained painted caligraphy some of which remains. His face is well carved, and it displays high arching eyebrown over downcast eyes and a wide triangular and prominent nose. He has high cheekbones and large ears, symbols of wisdom, as well as three creases on his forehead, signs of aging that are also signs of a sage. He wears the well decorated garb of a Taoist priest, which includes his black cap, a black undergarment with red borders crossed at the neck and hanging down to his shoes, and the overgarment with black borders and painted designs on the shoulders and knees clasped at the waist with a two part sash extending to the hem of the undergarment,and wide two part sleeves. The back of the figure contains a closed bung into which documents were placed during an eye opening ceremony.
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