天之四靈,以正四方Chinese Constellations are one of the Main Themes of Chinese Jades

dragonmap

商朝將天分為東西南北四宮,分別以青龍、白虎、朱雀、玄武為名。實際上是把天空分為四部,以每部分中的七個主要星宿連線成形,以其形狀命名。 《三輔黃圖》稱,蒼龍、白虎、朱雀、玄武,天之四靈,以正四方。左青龍、右白虎、前朱雀、後玄武,四大靈獸鎮守東西南北四宮,辟邪惡、調陰陽,為四方之神。四大靈獸在中國玉器上也成為主流圖騰之一。本文試圖從四種不同形制玉器加以說明。In China, the stars were closely tied to the events tigermapwithin the dynasties.The constellations or Xiù (宿) are grouped by the four directions, East, West, South and North. The dragon occupies the East, the tiger is in the West , the scarlet bird or phoenix  is in the South and The tortoise coupling with snake occupies the North. The dragon, tiger, phoenix  and turtle coupling snake have become one of the main motifs for the Chinese jades in different dynasties, and in phoenixmapeastern Han dynasty in particular. Here we will described four different jade forms.

  1. 東漢四靈紋白玉玉磬14.2-10.3cm. 玉磬是一種古代的玉石制樂器, 《禮記·郊特牲》:「諸侯之宮縣,而祭以白牡,擊玉磬…… 諸侯之僭禮也。 」 孫希旦 集解:「玉磬,《書》所謂鳴球,天子之樂器也。 」 唐 柳宗元 《渾鴻臚宅聞歌效白紵》詩:「朱脣掩抑悄無聲,金簧玉磬宮中生。」《孟子·萬章下》中寫到:「集大成turtlemap也者,金聲而玉振之也。 」本器白玉雕琢, 以出廓及淺浮雕技法, 結合幾何學美感形狀, 以四靈為圖案制作完美玉磬.玉磬紋飾之佈置如下: 鳳鳥完全出廓立於長股上緣, 龍首於短股出廓, 龍身位於短股以淺浮雕呈現, 白虎及玄武淺浮雕於長股面.古玉跡象有差異風化及增生晶體. Eastern Han Dynasty Jade Musical Slabs, W. 14.2-10.3cm. Carved with white jade, these musical slabs have the shape of polygon making of two trapezoids. On the convex side is seen a whole phoenix and dragon head. On the plane, there are low relief tiger and turtle coupled with snake. The carving is of masterpiece with skillful technique. Additive crystals are the major evidence of antiquity.s__3506178 (1)2. 東漢青玉四靈座尺寸: 長 36 cm本器青玉雕琢高浮雕青龍、白虎、朱雀、玄武四靈。形制可能用作紙鎮或
    筆架, 本器古玉跡象有差異風化及鈣化跡s__3506179 (1)象.Carved with pale tone jade, high relief motif of  the four auspicious animals of Dragon, Tiger, Phoenix and Turtle coupling with Snake are presented. The object may be used as paperweight or brush handle. Antiquity evidences are differential weathering and calcification.8135e995b736e585ace588861-12

3. 漢四靈獸玉璧, D.7.5cm

本器青玉雕琢, 形制為玉璧, 雙面對稱, 飾四靈獸淺浮雕, 古玉跡象為擴散暈沁色及鈣化. Carved  with pale tone jade, the object is a jade bi decorated with low relief four  auspicious animals consisting of dragon, phoenix, tiger, turtle coupling snake.  The motifs are symmetrical on both sides. Antiquity evidences are diffusive markings and calcification.

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dsc051684.東漢四靈獸玉鏡對,直徑 14公分及 13公分.  本器白玉雕琢,背面雕青龍,白虎, 朱雀, 玄武四靈獸淺浮雕, 中央有雙向鑽孔之半圓鈕, 本器鈣化之古玉跡象明顯。Eastern Han Dynasty, 203fb80e7bec54e7bb1ac032bd389b504fc26a2cJade Mirror, D.13-14cm. Carved with pale tone jade, the object is a jade mirror with low relief motif with four auspicious animals of dragon, tiger, phoenix and turtle coupling with snake.  Antiquity evidences are calcification and calcification.

 

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