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Figure

Figure

  • Place of origin:

    China (made)

  • Date:

    618-907 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Earthenware, unglazed

  • Credit Line:

    Bequeathed by Mrs B. Z. Seligman

  • Museum number:

    FE.155-1974

  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 137, The Curtain Foundation Gallery, case B, shelf 2

This unglazed earthenware figure represents a saluqi, a coursing hound. The presence of this and other similar figurines in tombs establishes that the Chinese imperial family had adopted the pursuits of the neighbouring steppe peoples, including hunting with dogs.

Some people believe that the saluqi is the earliest domesticated dog. It is known from about 2100 BC in ancient Egypt where these revered dogs were sometimes found mummified in royal tombs. Carvings dating from the Sumerian empire (7000-6000 BC) have also been identified as saluqi. The hounds were also known in India from the time of Alexander the Great and in China from these figurines in 8th-century tombs.

Physical description

Unglazed earthenware figure of a Saluqi dog. The presence of figurines in the tombs reinforces the fact that the Chinese imperial family had adopted the pursuits of the neighbouring steppe peoples, among them hunting with dogs. The saluqi - a coursing hound - is held by some to be the earliest domesticated dog. It is known from c.2100 BC in ancient Egypt where these revered dogs were sometimes found mummified in royal tombs; carvings dating from the Sumerian empire (7000-6000 BC) have also been identified as saluqi. It is also known in India from the time of Alexander the Great and in China from these depictions in 8th century tombs.

Place of Origin

China (made)

Date

618-907 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Earthenware, unglazed

Dimensions

Height: 12 cm, Width: 4 cm, Depth: 9 cm

Descriptive line

Unglazed earthenware figure of a Saluqi dog

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Whitfield, Susan. The Silk Road: Trade, Travel, War and Faith. London: The British Library, 2004, p. 237, pl. 167.

Materials

Earthenware

Subjects depicted

Dog

Categories

Sculpture; Ceramics

Collection

East Asia Collection

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