This jade is published in Filippo Salviati 4000 YEARS OF CHINESE ARCHAIC JADES Edition Zacke, Vienna 2017, no. 249
雙蛇龍形玉飾- 東周, 公元前5世紀-前4世紀
In this slightly asymmetrical pendant, the dragons are represented in profile view, their bodies designing an elegant curve which form a “U”-shaped arch in the centre of the ornament where a small suspension hole has been pierced. The heads of the animals are turned backwards, as if the dragons are facing each other from the opposite sides of the pendant. The body of each dragon extends along the entire length of the pendant, parallel to the other dragon’s body so that each animal’s tail ends up close to the opposite dragon’s head. The bodies of the animals meet at the centre of the ornament where they twist, one passing on top of the other. Careful observation of the central portion of the ornament reveals evidence of the difficulties the carver met when trying to overlap the two dragons’ bodies: they seem to disappear into the small hole pierced at the top of the pendant instead of intersecting. The details of the dragons’ bodies help decode the image. The two animals are provided with front and rear paws. The front paws are located in the portion of the body close to the dragon’s head and firmly grasp the other dragon’s body, as can be seen on the left and right side of the pendant: near the paws there is a tuft of hair carved in a volute marked with thin lines. The rear paws, provided with claws as the front ones, are located at the centre of the pendant just below the suspension hole. Two more appendages emerge from below the dragons’ bodies, while the entire body of the dragon is decorated with scales, scroll-like patterns and double incised lines. This jade has a diffused brownish colouration and black markings.
Provenance: From an old private Austrian-Chinese collection, acquired before 1980