Lot 1409. A bronze circular mirror with animals and inscription, Eastern Han dynasty (25-220). Estimate USD 6,000 - USD 8,000Price realised USD 20,000 © Christie's Images Ltd 2012.

The large knob set within a square from which project four 'T' motifs positioned below a dragon, a bird, a tiger and a unicorn separated by four nipples, all encircled by an inscription, a hatchured band and a band of stylized animls, all below a band comprised of a bird, dragons and foliate scrolls issuing from a horn or cornucopia on the rim, with dark grey patina - 4 7/16 in. (11.4 cm.) diam., 1/8 in. (.4 cm.) thick, box - 311.7g

Provenance: Robert H. Ellsworth Collection, New York, acquired from Alice Boney, Japan, 1960s. 

NoteA similar mirror (18.4 cm.) excavated in 1987 from a Three Kingdoms Eastern Wu tomb in Shengzhou is illustrated by Shilun Wang in Zhejiang chutu tongjing (Bronze Mirrors Excavated in Zhejiang), Beijing, 1987, no. 18.

Christie's. Luminous Perfection: Fine Chinese Mirrors from the Robert H. Ellsworth Collection, 22 March 2012, New York, Rockefeller Center