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Ref No: carnelianfigure

Chinese Carved Carnelian Figure

This Chinese figure is carved from carnelian, depicting a scene of a dragon in a body of water being wrangled by a group of fishermen. A glassy, translucent stone, Carnelian is an orange-colored variety of Chalcedony, a mineral of the Quartz family.

Chinese dragons are strongly associated with water and weather in popular religion. They are believed to be the rulers of moving bodies of water, such as waterfalls, rivers, or seas.

Because of this association, they are seen as “in charge” of water-related weather phenomena. In premodern times, many Chinese villages (especially those close to rivers and seas) had temples dedicated to their local “dragon king”. In times of drought or flooding, it was customary for the local gentry and government officials to lead the community in offering sacrifices and conducting other religious rites to appease the dragon, either to ask for rain or a cessation thereof.

Period: 20th Century
Style: Mid Century
Origin: China
Dimensions: D 7cm, H 8.5cm
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