Antique Chinese Shishi (lion/foo dog) Chop
Chinese guardian lions or Imperial guardian lions, often miscalled "Foo Dogs"
in the West, are a common representation of the lion in imperial China. Chinese
guardian lions are sometimes referred to in English as shishi, from the Chinese
shí shī (Chinese: 石獅; pinyin: shíshī; literally: "stone lion"), which refers
specifically to lion sculptures in stone.
The lions are traditionally carved from decorative stone, such as marble and
granite or cast in bronze or iron. Because of the high cost of these materials
and the labor required to produce them, private use of guardian lions was
traditionally reserved for wealthy or elite families. Indeed, a traditional
symbol of a family's wealth or social status was the placement of guardian
lions in front of the family home.
The Chinese chop or seal is used to sign documents, artwork, and other
paperwork. The Chinese chop is most commonly made from stone, but can also be
made in plastic, ivory, or metal.
There are three Mandarin Chinese names for the Chinese chop or seal. The seal
is most commonly called印鑑 (yìn jiàn) or 印章 (yìnzhāng). It is also sometimes
called圖章 / 图章 (túzhāng).
The Chinese chop is used with a red paste called 朱砂 (zhūshā). The chop is
pressed lightly into the朱砂 (zhūshā) then the image is transferred to paper by
applying pressure to the chop. There may be a soft surface beneath the paper to
ensure a clean transfer of the image. The paste is kept in a covered jar when
not in use to prevent it from drying out.”
This is a set of two Chinese two chops/seals---w/ a shishi (lion/foo dog) on
the top of the brass seal and a dragon on the top of the stone seal w/u
ntranslated Chinese hieroglyphics/characters on the bottom of the stone chop
and the brass seal.
The stone dragon chop is green with/brown mottling throughout. It is approx.
1¼” x 1¼” x 1 ¾ “ and weighs approx. 4 oz.
The brass seal is approx. 1¼” x 1¼” x 2 “ and weighs approx. 5.5 oz. There is
an incision on the base in back which says "made in China."
The chop/seal bottoms are clean with no red paste residue.
The cloth storage box is old with pronounced color fading on the lid and is
worn around the edges.
Keep in mind that there are some color differences in the pictures due to the
light/graphic qualities of the camera/flash and individual computer graphics
Perfect for a collection or display. Unique.