Dubbed the ‘Durrow Dragon’ by the Sheppard’s Irish Auction House, this Chinese White Jade Seal, claimed to be Qing Dynasty, was sold for €630,000 after a bidding war between two Chinese bidders on the telephone and internet. Highest price paid for an antique sold in the auction history of Ireland.
The moment I saw the white jade seal, the database in my mind recalls the somewhat similar ‘Huang Hou Zhi Xi’ Han Dynasty Empress Seal excavated from Hanjiawan in Xianyang City, Shaanxi Province. Given that both seals look pretty identical in terms of overall concept, the devil is in the details which set apart this ‘Durrow Dragon’ as probably a Chinese Imperial Archaistic White Jade Seal used during the Qing period.
The material looks good for top quality Hetian white jade, the curves and flows of the carvings look lively, natural wear and tear on the edges and remnants of red ink. If only we could have a look at the seal mark beneath.