Disk (bi 璧) with incised glyph


Artist: Liangzhu culture 良渚 (ca. 3300-ca. 2250 BCE)
Historical period(s)
Late Neolithic period, ca. 3300-2250 BCE
Jade (nephrite)
Diam x D: 24.5 x 1.3 cm (9 5/8 x 1/2 in)
China, Lake Tai region, purportedly found at Anxi, Zhejiang province
purportedly found at Anxi, Zhejiang province
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number
On View Location
Freer Gallery 19: Afterlife: Ancient Chinese Jades
Ceremonial Object, Jade

Ceremonial object

bird, China, inscription, Late Neolithic period (ca. 5000 - ca. 1700 BCE), nephrite

Reportedly excavated in Anki in Chekiang province [1]

To 1917
You Xiaoxi (late 19th-early 20th century), Shanghai, to 1917 [2]

From 1917 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from You Xiaoxi, in New York, in 1917 [3]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [4]


[1] According to Curatorial Remark 2 in the object record.

[2] See Original Miscellaneous List, S.I. 1286, pg. 287, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[3] See note 2.

[4] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Previous Owner(s)

Charles Lang Freer 1854-1919
You Xiaoxi (C.L. Freer source) late 19th-early 20th century

Published References
  • Alfred Salmony. Chinese Jade Through the Wei Dynasty. New York, 1963. pl. 7, fig. 2.
  • New Perspectives on China's Past: Chinese Archaeology in the Twentieth Century. 2 vols., Kansas City and New Haven, 2004. p. 172.
  • Hayashi Minao. Chugoku kodai no sakegame., reprint: Kokogaku zasshi, vol. 65, no. 2 (1979) pp. 97-118. Tokyo, 1979. pl. 21.
  • Hayashi Minao. Jade of the Liang-chu Culture. no. 360 Tokyo, March 1981. p. 23, fig. 3c.
  • Julia Murray. Neolithic Chinese Jades in the Freer Gallery of Art. vol. 14, no. 11 Hong Kong, November 1983. p. 16.
  • Wu Hung. Bird Motifs in Eastern Yi Art. vol. 16, no. 10 Hong Kong, October 1985. p. 35.
  • Shuping Deng. Tianming xuanniao, jianger shengshang: guyu huawen suo fanying de gudai xinyang. No. 42 Taipei, 1986. p. 19, fig. 7.
  • Elizabeth Childs-Johnson. Dragons, Masks, Axes and Blades from Four Newly-documented Jade-producing Cultures of Ancient China. 19, no. 4, 1988. p. 36, fig. 22.
  • Elizabeth Childs-Johnson Fang Gu. Yuqi shidai: Meiguo bowuguan cang Zhongguo zaoqi yuqi (The Jade Age: Early Chinese Jades in American Museums). Beijing, 2009. pp.82-83.
  • Shuping Deng. Liangzhu yuqi shang de shenmi fuhao. No. 117 Taipei, 1992. p. 32, fig. 7.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Jades for Life and Death
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum

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