Emperor Kangxi of China, also known as K'ang-hsi, May 4, 1654 – December 20, 1722) was the fourth Emperor of China of the Manchu Qing Dynasty (also known as the Ching), and the second Qing emperor to rule over all of China, from 1661 to 1722. He is known as one of the greatest Chinese emperors in history. His reign of 61 years makes him the longest-reigning Emperor of China in history. Refer to http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Kangxi_of_China

 

 

 

(ex. of imperial jade given by Emperor Kangxi - Golden Jade Yuan-Yang)

Jade remains the eternal and mythical stone, an object of fascination and absolute power for the sovereign. This “beautiful stone”, “the image of goodness” for Confucius, and unfold the millennial history that, since the Neolithic Period up to the 1920s, has constantly pondered over its beauty, its virtue, its symbol and its prestige.

A major expression of Chinese civilisation and a many-facetted material, jade belongs to the most ancient history of Chinese art. A tablet from the Neolithic Longshan culture (2300 - 1800 B.C.) evokes the precious lapidary who accompanied the emperor Qianlong (Emperor Kangxi’s grandson) all his life, for poems and seals to be engraved on the most beautiful jades of his collection.

Contemplated in the form of simple polished tablets offered as princely gifts, animal motifs drawn from an imperial bestiary, bowls, brush pots on the theme of literati or, in a more warlike manner, formidably sharp blades, jade is not only prized by emperors of China, sultans of Samarkand, Mughal sovereigns and Safavid shahs of Iran. For the Chinese it is more precious than gold. Refer to http://www.guimet.fr/en/exhibitions/jade-from-emperors-to-art-deco

 

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