Mirror with stylized feline masks

Historical period(s)
Eastern Han dynasty, 174 CE
Diam x D: 18.3 x 1.5 cm (7 3/16 x 9/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art Collection
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Metalwork, Mirror


China, Eastern Han dynasty (25 - 220)

From at least 1901 to at least 1926
Qian Baoqing (active 1880s-late 1920s), Xiangyang, Hubei province, China [1]

From at least 1938 to 1939
C. T. Loo & Company, New York from at least November 1938 [2]

From 1939
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from C. T. Loo & Company on July 6, 1939 [3]


[1] According to Liu Xinyuan, Qigushi jinwen shu (Guangxu ren yin, 1902), p. 15: 7a, the mirror was in the possession of Qian Baoqing by 1901. The mirror was published by Goto Shuichi (or Morikazu) in Kanshiki kyo (Tokyo, Yuzankaku, 1926), pp. 199-200, where it was listed as still in the Qian collection.

[2] See C. T. Loo's stockcard no. L 38/523: "Bronze mirror with inscriptions, Han," C. T. Loo & Frank Caro Archive, Musée Guimet, Paris, copy in object file. In December 1938, the object was transferred to the Freer Gallery, see "List of objects owned by C. T. Loo and Company, New York…[and] left by Mr. Loo on December 10, 1938 at the Gallery for examination," copy in object file.

[3] See C. T. Loo's invoice dated July 6, 1939, copy in object file.

Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)

Qian Baoqing
C.T. Loo & Company 1914-1948

Published References
  • William Watson. The Art of Dynastic China. New York, 1981. ill. 285.
  • T'an Tan-chiung. T'ung ch'i kai shu. Taipei. pl. 174b.
  • Regina L. Shoolman, Charles E. Slatkin. The Enjoyment of Art in America: A Survey of the Permanent Collections of Painting, Sculpture, Ceramics & Decorative Arts in American and Canadian Museums: Being an Introduction to the Masterpieces of Art from Prehistoric to Modern Times. Philadelphia and New York. pl. 139.
  • Anneliese Bulling. The Decoration of Mirrors of the Han Period: A Chronology. no. 20 Ascona, Switzerland. fig. K.
  • Dr. John Alexander Pope, Thomas Lawton, Harold P. Stern. The Freer Gallery of Art. 2 vols., Washington and Tokyo, 1971-1972. cat. 33, vol. 1: p. 156.
  • Grace Dunham Guest, Archibald Gibson Wenley. Annotated Outlines of the History of Chinese Arts. Washington, 1949. p. 5.
  • Masterpieces of Chinese and Japanese Art: Freer Gallery of Art handbook. Washington, 1976. p. 23.
  • Simonetta De Vries. Recent Oriental Acquisitions by Museums. vol. 12, no. 2 New York, February 1940. p. 48.
  • Suzanne Cahill. The Word Made Bronze: Inscriptions on Medieval Chinese Bronze Mirrors. vol. 39 New York and Honolulu, HI. p. 63.
  • Compiled by the staff of the Freer Gallery of Art. A Descriptive and Illustrative Catalogue of Chinese Bronzes: Acquired During the Administration of John Ellerton Lodge. Oriental Studies Series, no. 3 Washington, 1946. p. 72, pl. 38.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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