Recumbent Jade Buffalo

Nephrite Jade

Length: 4 cm (1.5 inches)

Shang Dynasty (商朝), Circa 1600-1100 BC


This delightful depiction of a recumbent bovine is rendered from a small pebble of nephrite jade.  The coloration is grey-green with deep russet.  The body of the buffalo shows a characteristic raised pattern derived from bronze form vessels of the period.  The underside is left plain to show the beauty of the jade material.  There is a suspension hole through the mouth of the beast.  In our opinion, the subject matter, material and workmanship suggest a Shang Dynasty date for this work of art.  

Compare to two zoomorphic pieces with similar surface decoration are published in Chinese Archaic Jades from the Kwan Collection, Art Gallery of the Chinese University, Hong Kong. Yang Boda. 1994. Numbers 68 & 69.

From a private American collection.


Reference Number: 4168

Price Available Upon Request


To inquire about this work of art, contact us at 415.299.1600 or email at