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Robe For A Statue (China), late 18th century

This is a Robe for a statue. It is dated late 18th century and we acquired it in 1960. Its medium is silk, metallic and its technique is plain weave with discontinuous wefts (slit tapestry). It is a part of the Textiles department.

This tiny late 18th century dragon was most likely used to clothe a deity figure in a Daoist temple. The 5-clawed dragon and bright yellow color were symbols of the Emperor, indicating that this robe was either an imperial donation to a temple, or was used to clothe a statue of a legendary emperor.
Dragon robes originated in the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and continued to be worn until the late Qing (1644-1911). The robe features dragon medallions surrounded by blue and green clouds, flaming pearls, bats and other auspicious symbols. The pattern scheme and motifs on this example indicate that it dates to the late Qing (1644 -1911).

This object was featured in our Object of the Day series in a post titled The Dragon's Allure.

It is credited Museum purchase from Au Panier Fleuri Fund.

Its dimensions are

H x W: 41.9 × 77.5 cm (16 1/2 × 30 1/2 in.)

Cite this object as

Robe For A Statue (China), late 18th century; silk, metallic; H x W: 41.9 × 77.5 cm (16 1/2 × 30 1/2 in.); Museum purchase from Au Panier Fleuri Fund; 1960-32-2

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Robe For A Statue (China), late 18th century |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=18 October 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>