Sancai Glazed Ming Dynasty Roof Tile


A finely rendered Chinese Ming Dynasty sancai glazed semi-circular roof tile, modelled with a leaping dragon-headed fish. The zoomorphic creature features a fierce dragon-like head and a fish body, composed of finely incised details and scales. This terracotta roof tile displays a lovely brilliant green and ochre glaze.

Date: Circa 1368–1644 AD
Period: Ming Dynasty
Condition: Extremely fine, complete and intact.


SKU: LD-54 Category: Tags: , ,

The Ming Dynasty played host to some of China’s most renowned artistic achievements. The culture’s artistic explosion can be in part explained by the Ming dynasty’s economic success. Roof tiles, such as this fine example, were usually placed on the roofs of private and public houses to ward off evil spirits and fire. The dragon-headed fish is known in Chinese mythology as Chiwen, meaning ‘hornless-dragon mouth’. Chiwen dragons were usually depicted without horns and with a short, fish-like body instead.  Fish-like dragons were extremely popular ornamental motif in traditional Chinese architecture and art.

Weight 1450 g
Dimensions W 19.1 x H 25.1 cm
Chinese Mythology



Pottery and Porcelain



Reference: For similar: Bonhams, London, 18th May 2018, lot 630

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