Lidded incense burner (xianglu) with geometric decoration and narrative scenes


Historical period(s)
Early Western Han dynasty, ca. 2nd century BCE
Bronze with gold, silver, turquoise, and carnelian inlay
H x W: 17.9 x 10 cm (7 1/16 x 3 15/16 in)
China, Henan or Hebei province
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number
On View Location
Freer Gallery 18: Art and Industry: China's Ancient Houma Foundry
Metalwork, Vessel

Incense burner

animal, casting, China, Daoism, incense, inlay, landscape, Western Han dynasty (206 BCE - 9 CE), WWII-era provenance

To 1947
Jun Tsei Tai (1911-1992), Shanghai, to February 1947 [1]

C.T. Loo & Company, New York, purchased from Jun Tsei Tai in February 1947 [2]

From 1947
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from C.T. Loo & Company on July 8, 1947 [3]


[1] See C. T. Loo's stockcard no. NYL-7/982: "Bronze hill-censer on a wide spreading foot with three dragons in relief inlaid with gold, silver and various stones. Body decorated with bands of abstract motives in gold, silver with turquoise and rubis. Cover with fine rows of hills with hunting scenes, fighting animals and birds in gold, silver and hard stones inlaid, many stones missing Late Chou," Frank Caro Archive, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, copy in object file. According to an annotation on the stockcard, Loo purchased the bronze from J. T. Tai.

[2] See C. T. Loo's stockcard cited in note 1.

[3] See C. T. Loo's invoice, date July 8, 1947, copy in object file.

Previous Owner(s)

Jun Tsei Tai 1911 - 1992
C.T. Loo & Company active 1908-1950

Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum