Miniature jade mountain landscape

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from China

Postcard of Miniature jade mountain landscape.
© National Museums Scotland

Miniature jade mountain landscape

This miniature jade mountain was made as a gift, to wish someone long life. It represents the mythical Western Paradise, a jade mountain north of Kun Lun, where immortal people live. The standing figure may represent Shou Lao, god of longevity.

The mountain has been made by carving a piece of jade. The scene depicts a forest of pine trees, with two human-like figures, one leading the way and the other in a servant-like posture.

According to Taoist belief in China, some dead people can achieve immortality and live in either the Western Paradise or the Happy Isles of the Eastern Sea. Jade is believed to have magical powers, and jade mountains were popular at various periods.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-180-000-748-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0504: National Museums Scotland Part 2
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  A.1945.4554 A
Date: 18th century
18th century AD
Material: Wood
What: Block stand
Subject: Jade
Where: China
Description: Stand of carved wood for a jade block: China, 18th century
  • Sheridan, J A (ed). Heaven and Hell and Other Worlds of the Dead. Edinburgh: National Museum of Scotland, 2000. 
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