17. M5012



Chinese jade pebble carved as a recumbent water buffalo, niu, the nape, horns and tail naturalistically carved, the neck and split hooves neatly tucked underneath.

The stone opaque white with natural russet markings.

2 5/8 inches, 6.7 cm long.

Ming dynasty, 16th/17th century.

Wood stand.


Pierced through the mouth for suspension.

Provenance & Additional Information

  • Sold by Sotheby’s London in their auction of Important Chinese Bronze, Ceramics and Works of Art, 19th June 1984, lot 116, p. 94, illustration p. 93.
  • A similar buffalo dated Tang to Yuan from the collections of Wilfred Fleischer, Sir Harry & Lady Garner and Dr. & Mrs. Marvin Gordon, was included by Eskenazi in their exhibition of Chinese jades from a private collection, 1976, no. 11, pp. 24/5, and is also included by Jenny F. So in the exhibition of Chinese Jades from the Cissy and Robert Tang Collection, Art Museum, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2015-2016, no. 37, pp. 180/1; another from the collection of Philip Cardeiro, dated to the Song dynasty, was included by Suzanne Haney Foster in Chinese Jade, the Image from Within, an exhibition held at the Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, California, 1986, no. 118, p. 61; another was included by Marchant in their exhibition of Chinese Jades from the Mr. O. J. R. Allen Collection, 2013, no. 13, p. 28/9.
  • The water buffalo, ox, niu, is a symbol of the coming of spring with abundance and also represents harvest and fertility.