明嘉靖 剔彩二十八宿金曜四星君斗 Rice measure with four constellation deities
Ming dynasty (1368–1644), Jiajing period (1522–66)
Carved red, green, and black lacquer
H. 6 1/2 in. (16.5 cm); W. 12 3/4 in. (32.4 cm); D. 12 7/8 in. (32.7 cm)
John Stewart Kennedy Fund, 1913
Not on view
This vessel’s shape and pattern identify it as a rare example of a rice measure used in Daoist rituals. On each side is a figure in a Daoist robe with one of four animals (dragon, ox, dog, and goat). These animals represent constellation deities from the set of twenty-eight mansions in Chinese astronomy, which reflect the movement of the moon in a sidereal month.