Jade two-part buckle

Length: 4 1/2 inches, 11.5 cm

Jade two-part buckle

Jade two-part buckle

18th century

A white jade two-part belt buckle, consisting of two sections of square outline and bowed shape, each with a large round knob for attachment at the back. Each section is finely worked in openwork high relief with a crouching dragon, holding in its mouth a spray of lingzhi fungus. To connect the two parts of the buckle, one section is worked with a dragon’s head, the other with a loop. The stone is of very pale celadon, whitish tone.

Jessica Rawson, in describing an earlier jade two-part belt clasp writes that this type of belt clasp ‘… may have been used for private dress …’ as opposed to indicating rank.1 A very similar two-part belt buckle was formerly in the Muwen Tang collection.2

Provenance: Private collection, UK.

This jade vase was on view at the Graves Art Gallery in Sheffield, in the 1970’s and early 1980’s and subsequently on view at the Museum of East Asian Art in Bath from 1988 until 2019.

  1. Rawson, J. Chinese Jade from the Neolithic to the Qing, British Museum Press, London 1995, 25:19, p. 340
  2. http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2016/the-muwen-tang-collection-of-chinese-jades­hk0708/lot.9.html