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Archaic Nephrite. Jade Bi. Warring States Period.

Archaic Nephrite. Jade Bi. Warring States Period.
SKU: col-2746
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Desirable archaic nephrite (jade) disc, so-called Bi, from the Warring States period ( 476 BCE – 221 BCE).


Diameter: 3,3 inches ( 83 mm ) 80 gram, fine condition


This object had been carved on both sides with raised “grain pattern” with raised ridges.


The object comes from the famous Dr. Heihs collection.


Dark green jade with brown beige inclusions making a pattern with horizontal lines. Shiny surface with a soft polish from handling.


From the earliest times Bi-disks were buried with the dead, as a sky symbol, accompanying the dead into the after world or "sky", with the cong which connected the body with the earth. They were placed ceremonially on the body in the grave of persons of high social status. Bi are sometimes found near the stomach and chest in neolithic burials.


Jade, like bi disks, has been used throughout Chinese history to indicate an individual of moral quality, and has also served as an important symbol of rank. They were used in worship and ceremony – as ceremonial items they symbolised the ranks of emperor, king, duke, marquis, viscount, and baron with four different kweis and two different bi disks.


In war during the Zhou dynasty period (11th to 250 bc), bi disks belonging to the leaders of the defeated forces were handed over to the victor as a sign of submission.




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