A Rare Dated and Inscribed Ming Bronze Dedicatory Panel. Inscribed and Dated 45th Year of Ming Emperor Jiajing Equivalent to 15th of August 1566. This Flat Ming Bronze Plaque has a Small Shallow Rim and Two Holes for Suspension. The Front is Decorated in High Relief with Two Soldiers Standing Guard by a Tripod Censer, Above, Among the Clouds is a Figure Dressed as a Scholar-Official, Presumably the King of Heaven Mentioned in the Dedicatory Inscription on the Reverse.
Very good, no damage, the figure show traces of gilding.
Height : 22.5 cm (8 3/4 inches)
Width : 15.2 cm (6 inches).
There is a small stained old rectangular label to the reverse with some faint Chinese characters just visible.
The Dated Inscription :
The extensive chiselled inscription on the reverse mentions Beijing, it says that Mr Cheung donated this to the goddess for his home and family for good luck, it also says he will pay a donation for three years, it mentions the King of heaven. Inscribed and Dated 45th Year of Ming Emperor Jiajing Equivalent to 15th of August 1566.
Jiajing 1522-1566 :
The previous Ming Emperor Zhengde (1506-1521) had no sons, so the throne passed to his adopted son, Jiajing who was born in 1507 and died in 1567. He was unique among Ming emperors in that he was an ardent Taoist, he also tried to suppress Buddhism. In 1542 Jiajing narrowly escaped assassination by his concubines. Eighteen palace girls tried to strangle him while he slept but they used the wrong knot. For more information about Jiajing see : Chronicles of the Chinese Emperors (Anna Paludan, Thames and Hudson,1998. ISBN 0-500-05090-2).