Search results for: "Tao Tie"


 A beautiful jade carving pendant of a Tao Tie with a yu bi hanging from his mouth.

According to the book Sheng An Wai Ji, the poet Yang Seng, described the nine sons of the dragon, Tao Tie is one of them.  They are;

Bi Xi, one who like carrying heavy stuff and often found with a stone tablet on his back.
Chi Wen, one who enjoys the vista, often found one the ridges of buildings.
Pu Lao, love music, found on bells.
Bi An, one who hates criminals, found on the lintel of the prison.
Tao Tie, one who loves to eat, found on lids and the side of cauldrons; sometimes found on the middle of the beam, it is believed that he can drank all the water and keep the flood away.
Gong Fu, love to play with water, found on bridges.
Ya Zi, a fierce creature with weapons.
Suan Ni, loves smoky fire, found on the lid of incense burner.
Jiao Tu, hates trespassers, oftern found on the main door.

This mythical creature, the fifth son of the dragon, is one who loves to eat made a perfect ornament for festive season.


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DIA140mm, China

The creature of the pendant is known as a “Tao Tie”, in mythical legend he is fifth son of the dragon.  The Tao Tie has the face of a goat and the body of a man, he has eyes under his armpits, teeth of the tiger but the voice of a baby.

The Tao Tie is said to be a greedy eater and thus his images are found in a lot of bronze cauldrons, even the gourmet experts are referred to as old Tao.

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metal lionsW90xL200xH180, China

A pair of suan ni, with smoke coming out of their mouths!

Like the Tao Tie, Suan Ni is one of the sons of the dragon (the 8th son).  Unlike the Tao Tie who adores food, the Suan Ni is a patient creature that loves the smoke from the incense.  He can be found on the large incense burners and also as a carrier for the Bodhisattva Manjusri.

These Suan Ni are a pair of incense burners, flip open the head, place the incense, light it, flip the head back and enjoy their smokey conversations.

metal lion


W220xL300mm, China

There are many door gods, the most famous and the original ones are Qin Qiong and Wei Chi Gong.  The two generals have been keeping the ghosts away from the imperial court. the Tang Emperor felt sorry for their long shifts and ordered portraits to be put up on the doors to give them a well deserved break.  Click here for the full story.  Traditional Chinese doors comes in pairs and a print of the individual door god would be posted on both doors.  This particular prints has two door gods, the one with the white face on the left is Qin Qiong (門丞) and Wei Chi Gong (戶尉) is on the right, this print is made for single door.

The four words on the print “門丞戶尉” refers to the two door gods, but funny enough with the four words mixed up as “門尉戶丞” it became a Taoist spell for healing the sick.  The procedure apparently goes like this (please don’t try this at home);

take a rooster with lush feathers,
hold a knife with your right hand and the rooster on the left,
go to the house of the sick,
inside of the house take 3 steps and on each step say the spell,
(門尉戶丞, so and so’s sickness, expel at once, promptly take the order)
then put the head of the rooster in the mouth of the patient 3 times,
take the knife and draw blood from the rooster’s comb,
mixed the blood with 100ml of white spirit for the patient to drink.

… if the patient was not very sick before … he probably would be now …

8 immortalsDIA165mm, China

The figurines on this necklace used to be the ornaments of a child’s hat.  A special hat would be made for the child’s birth, 100 days celebration and the first birthday.  The hat is seen as a blessing for the child, depending on the gender, family social status, the design of the hat varies.

The gold plated enamel ornaments would have belongs to a hat of a wealth family.  The 9 figurines are the 8 Immortals (one either side) + the god of Longevity (in the middle).  The 8 Immortals are; Iron-Crutch Tie Guai Li, Philosopher Han Xiang Zi, Elder Zhang Guo Lao, Lan Cai He, Immortal Woman He Zian Gu, Leader Lu Dong Bin, Han Zhong Li and Royal Uncle Cao Guo Jiu, they are Taoist saints who are not very powerful and have a few human frailties.  One of the many stories of the 8 Immortals is about their birthday wishes for the Queen Mother of the West and thus the appearance is associated with birthdays and blessings.

Here is a clip from the Xiang opera “8 Immortals birthday wishes for the Queen Mother of the West”

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