Diameter: 35.1 cm (13 13/16 in.); Overall: 1.3 cm (1/2 in.); Rim: 0.8 cm (5/16 in.)
Weight: 3.76 kg (8.29 lbs.)
Gift of Drs. Thomas and Martha Carter in Honor of Sherman E. Lee 1995.389
A union of male and female birds, the phoenix often symbolizes the yin and yang of Chinese philosophy, which equates to universal balance and harmony.
This exceptionally large bronze mirror features magnificently long-tailed phoenixes with cloud scrolls, motifs that can also be seen on the silk boots nearby. While the mirror, according to its inscription Zhang Zhigao from Jinling (Nanjing) was made in southeast China, the boots were made in the northern part of China then occupied by the Khitan people. The inscription is placed to the right of the mirror’s central knob. Mirrors typically have one polished and one decorated side and were used in part in tombs for ritual purpose or served as disks for reflection.
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@example.com.
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.