Period: Qing dynasty (1644--1911)
Measurement: H. 33 cm
Provenance: The Grand Palace of Zhongyue Temple, Dengfeng, Henan, 1988
The yellow glazed roof ridge beast normally squats on the tube-shaped tiles, raising its head, with eyes glaring, mouth slightly open, bearded, fangs exposed, and its body is fully covered by scales.
The sculptural animals on roof ridge were ornamental building components in ancient China, they originally served as preventing the wooden trenails and iron nails from leakage and rusting, and fastening or bolstering the connecting parts of the roof ridge, and later, they evolved into the ornamental parts, and with a strict hierarchical meaning.
There were at most ten ridge beasts in the ancient buildings of the ethnic Han people, distributing on the tails of the ridges at both ends of the house. The order from bottom to top is: dragon, phoenix, lion, heavenly horse, sea horse, Suan’ni (lion-liked mythical beast), Xiayu (mythical marine creature), Xiezhi (Qilin-like mythical beast), Dou Niu (mythical dragon), Hangshi (mythical winged human-like animal), the more the number, the higher the grade of the building, only the roof of the imperial palace has the most ridge beasts of any building, and the number of ridge beasts used in other buildings decreases in order of different grades.