A SMALL STONE-AGE AXE, NEOLITHIC AGE
China, c. 2500-2000 BC. This small, stone-age axe comes from the famous collection of Max Loehr and, according to his notes, was discovered in Inner Mongolia. Loehr lived until 1988, was a German scholar and last taught at Harvard University. This black axe has a simple form which widens towards the blade. The body is powerful; there is no opening, such as for a handle. The main surfaces have a slight curve towards the blade, the blade itself being rather blunt. On one of the broader sides, the longer edges are beveled and become considerably wider towards the narrow butt. It should also be mentioned that Loehr himself referred to the piece, in English, as a “chisel”. We have identified it as an “ax” because it has the same form, even if it is smaller.
Condition: Grinding marks are still visible; chips due to age on the exposed edges, particularly in the area around the blade.
Provenance: Max Loehr Collection, Sotheby’s Paris (15 December 2016).
Dimensions: Height 8.3 cm. Max. thickness 17 mm.