Tang Dynasty Polychromatic Statuette of a Warrior

£ 1,395.00

An extremely fine Tang Dynasty moulded red terracotta warrior guardian figure, presented standing with his arms bent in the act of holding possibly a weapon, now sadly missing. The figure wears a high headpiece and a full elaborate armour, with dragon-shaped epaulettes and divided breast plate, and a over a knee-length tunic. Such armours were favoured by Tang military officers and were often worn by mythical figures and tomb guardians. Facial features, such as the almond-shaped eyes, dramatically furrowed brows and moustaches, are emphasised by a ferocious expression and are rendered with white, black and red pigment, applied after firing. After-firing applied pigments are usually more prone to flaking. However, in this case, the original colours have preserved themselves extremely fine, maintaining their original brightness.

N.B. This item will require additional postage charges after checkout due to weight and size.

Date: Circa 618-906 AD
Period: Tang Dynasty
Condition: Extremely fine, with original pigments still intact. The statuette has been thermoluminescence tested at Laboratory Kotalla.


SKU: FP-240 Category: Tags: , ,

Grave goods were an important status symbol in ancient China, so the affluent and important would be accompanied in their travels through the afterlife with numerous depictions of people, items and animals. Terracotta warrior figures, such as this fine example, were originally placed at each side of the entrance of the tomb gate, which was located at the end of a long underground ramp used to expel evil spirits and to protect the deceased resting peacefully. Such statues were usually portrayed with ferocious foreign facial and anatomical features: to ensure the best protection for the deceased, such statuettes were modelled to represent the powerful foreigners that the Tang Dynasty often had to battle with.

To discover more about Tang statuettes, please visit our relevant blog post: Terracotta Tomb Attendants.

Weight 3000 g
Dimensions L 9.0 x W 11.0 x H 45.0 cm


Pottery and Porcelain

Reference: For similar: Christie’s, Amsterdam, December 2010, Auction 2848, Lot 863.

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