Pendant in the form of a turtle


Historical period(s)
Anyang period, Late Shang dynasty, ca. 1300-ca. 1050 BCE
Jade (serpentine)
H x W x D (overall): 2.1 × 3.3 × 0.6 cm (13/16 × 1 5/16 × 1/4 in)
China, probably Henan province, Anyang
Credit Line
The Dr. Paul Singer Collection of Chinese Art of the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; a joint gift of the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation, Paul Singer, the AMS Foundation for the Arts, Sciences, and Humanities, and the Children of Arthur M. Sackler
Paul Singer collection
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Jade, Jewelry and Ornament


Anyang period (ca. 1300 - ca. 1050 BCE), carving, China, Paul Singer collection, serpentine, Shang dynasty (ca. 1600 - ca. 1050 BCE), turtle

To at least 1940
Zhang Naiji (1899-1948), Shanghai [1]

From at least 1962 to 1997
Paul Singer (1904-1997), Summit, New Jersey, from at least 1962 [2]

From 1997
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, bequeathed by Paul Singer [3]


[1] Zhang Naiji lent the object to Archaic Chinese Jades: Special Exhibition (Philadelphia: The University Museum, February 1940), cat. 78 (ill.) Zhang was a salt merchant born to a prestigious family in Zhejiang. He collected ancient Chinese art objects and Chinese coins. C. T. Loo exhibited bronzes from his New York gallery’s stock in the exhibition in 1940 and it is known that at the time the dealer acquired a number of objects from Zhang Naiji’s collection, possibly including this jade.

[2] The object was included in exhibitions of Paul Singer’s collection in the 1960s and 1970s, see Animal Forms in Chinese Art (New York, Staten Island Museum, September 23 – November 4, 1962), cat. 12; Max Loehr, Relics of Ancient China (New York, The Asia Society, 1965), p. cat. 28 (ill.); Ruth Spelman, The Arts of China: A Retrospective (Greenvale, L.I., N.C.: W. Post Art Gallery, Long Island University, February 4-March 27, 1977), cat. 19 (ill.). Paul Singer mentioned in his memoirs, completed in 1993, that he acquired 17 jades that stemmed from Zhang Naiji’s collection from J. T. Tai of New York, see Paul Singer, “Reminiscences of a Transient Custodian,” ms., Paul Singer Papers, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives, p. 83-84. The collection of Chinese art and antiquities assembled by Paul Singer over time was purchased by him on behalf of Arthur M. Sackler, Jillian Sackler, The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation, the AMS Foundation for the Arts, Sciences and Humanities and later was transferred to the children of Arthur M. Sackler.

[3] Upon Paul Singer’s death in January 1997, his collection was transferred to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery by order of the Executors of the Estate under a loan agreement signed on February 1997. Shortly thereafter, the Sackler Gallery was vested with full ownership and title to the collection in full agreement by the Sackler Foundations and Sackler

Previous Owner(s)

Dr. Paul Singer 1904-1997

Published References
  • Max Loehr. Relics of Ancient China: From the Collection of Dr. Paul Singer. Exh. cat. New York. cat. 28.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum

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