Henan Museum
Gold Hairpin Embedded with Gems
Edit: Acf
Time: 2023-09-18 17:07:43
Period: The Sixth year of Hongzhi era of Ming dynasty(1493)
Provenance: Unearthed at the Lady Wang’s tomb, Xunxian county,1985
Measurements: L.20 cm, W. 5.5 cm, W. 107.1 g

The top of the hairpin was created into a dragon head turning backward, with two tiers of auspicious clouds exhaled from its mouth: the lower tier, in an oval form, was embedded with fourteen gems of ruby and sapphire, the upper tier was embedded with a semicircle sapphire, with a loop of coiled cloud made of gold foil. The flat shaft of the hairpin remains plain without any adornments. In total, 11 ruby and sapphire survived, others were missing at excavation. Created with processes of pressing, welding, embedding, the hairpin in overall resembles a flying dragon who are exhaling auspicious clouds, it is truly vivid, elegant, and majestic.

The tomb occupant, Wang Bolu, was the fifth daughter of Wang Yue, Minister of War of the Ming dynasty. She was deeply loved and cherished by her parents, but she never married due to illness, after her death, her devastated father composed the epitaph to express his agony. Her tomb yielded multiple excellent jewellery, which were the epitome of the endless love of her family.