Sep 8, 2014
May 22, 2006
May 22, 2006
Sep 8, 2014

The Knickknack Peddler

The Knickknack Peddler



Li Song 李嵩

(Chinese, active c. 1190-c. 1230)

Album leaf; ink and color on silk

Image: 24.1 x 26 cm (9 1/2 x 10 1/4 in.); with mat: 33.3 x 40.5 cm (13 1/8 x 15 15/16 in.)

Andrew R. and Martha Holden Jennings Fund 1963.582

Did you know?

There is a skull, upside down, near the top of the right basket.


The court artist Li Song from Hangzhou excelled in meticulous depictions of children, peddlers, and their various goods. Here, he captures a dramatic scene of children attacking a snake with a stick and stone. The peddler rushes toward the children, leaving his merchandise unattended. Painted during the reign of emperor Ningzong, the drama unfolding around vulnerable children may allude to Ningzong’s nine sons who died young, leaving him without a direct male descendant.

See also

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email [email protected].

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.