Silver overlaid ceremonial arrowhead
This item has been sold.
Overall length

14.6 cm

Arrowhead

Width 32 mm

Length 44.5 mm

Neck 10.5 mm

 

Thickness

Base of head 3 mm

Weight

21 grams

Materials

Iron, silver

Origin

Qing Empire, probably Eastern Tibet

Dating

19th century

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Introduction

Arrows played important roles in the ceremonies of various cultures under the Qing, including the Tibetans, Mongolians, and the Manchu rulers. Special arrows with highly decorative heads were sometimes worn during auspicious ceremonies or votive offerings.

 

This example

An iron ceremonial arrowhead. Its basic profile reminds of the shape of a gourd, which in itself was an auspicious symbol in Chinese culture and its sphere of influence.

It has a short "neck" from which the tang protrudes. The tang is forge folded, and is square in cross-section with diagonal file marks.

Both faces are decorated with scrollwork in silver damascening. The nature of the decoration is of a type that makes it hard to decide whether it is Manchu, Mongolian or Tibetan. Craftsmen from all these spheres did such scrollwork, and silver overlay in this style was also common across the entire region. However, my gut feeling says most likely Eastern Tibetan on the basis of the style.

Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead
Qing/Tibetan ceremonial arrowhead

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Currently available:

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