Sword and scabbard
In greatly reduced condition. Presently protected by plastic cover, thus description based on indirect examination. Tang stub 0.035 cm. long extends above sword guard. Jade guard, lozenge-shaped in section. Upper edge of sword guard has rectangular notch; lower edge is shallow chevron. Incised on guard is tiger head. Blade and scabbard nearly completely consolidated. Under magnification it is possible to see fabric fibers, wood grain and deteriorated iron.
Max Loehr illustrates one iron sword (Chinese Bronze Age Weapons, Ann Arbor, University of Michigan Press, 1956, No. 103, pl. XXXIX, excerpts in Higgins Armory Museum Library). It has a wooden sheath and a bronze guard and is not dissimilar to Higgins Armory Museum 2326. It is dated to the earlier Han Dynasty (206 B.C.E.- 24 C.E.) viz. p. 206. Alleged by Devine to have been fround near Wei-hui-fu, M. Honan, and to be beginning of Chin Dynasty (221 BCE or beginning of Han Dynasty (206 BCE Western Han, 25 CE Eastern Han).
Max Loehr, "Chinese Bronze Age Weapons" (Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Press, 1956), no. 103, plt. XXXIX. "The Chinese Exhibition: An Illustrated Handlist of Archaeological Finds of the People's Republic of China," National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., December 13, 1974-March 30, 1975, vol. 2, p. 33.
Publication & Exhibit History
Old photograph in working file; details of guard from auction catalogue attached to reverse of working file card.