Returned to lender The Met accepts temporary loans of art both for short-term exhibitions and for long-term display in its galleries.

Unarmored General


Qin dynasty (221–206 BCE)

Not on view

This unarmored figure can be identified as a military officer by his size (larger than most) and headdress (a distinctive cap split into two folded peaks). The cap may refer to the “pheasant’s-tail cap” recorded in Chinese historical texts, in which case two feathers would have been inserted at the back. Such caps became customary adornment for military officers, owing to the pheasant’s combative nature. It is still uncertain which of the figures’ features indicate their ranks and responsibilities, though the bows on the armors of some terracotta generals are speculated to signal rank.

Unarmored General, Earthenware, China

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.