Qilin Under a Full Moon Ink Stone

c. 1850
W: 3.75" D: 5.25" H: 1.25"
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Inkstones were used by a venerable scholar or artist to saturate calligraphy brushes with ink. This 19th century inkstone is finely carved with a Qilin, a mythical Chinese beast associated with sages and considered an omen of prosperity. It was carved of a select duan stone, a stone native to China, whose material enhanced the ink and often had natural marks, like the circle in this stone, that would have been considered auspicious and symbolic.

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