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A 19th century Chinese carved guardian statue used as ship ballast. In the time when great wooden ships dominated the trade among nations of the east, it was not uncommon for ships bringing goods to China to return with stone sculptures in their hulls as ballast. Similarly European traders would often use Chinese porcelain as ballast to protect the more valuable teas and spices. This guardian statue depicts a woman elegantly dressed in robes holding what might be a gift in her hands. She is wearing a headdress and has long hair that extends below her shoulders. Long hair was common during most of Chinese history as cutting hair was often considered highly disrespectful to one’s family.
The back of this stone sculpture is a 90 degree angle, which would allow it to sit in any corner. This 19th century hand-carved Chinese guardian stone statue would bring an exotic presence to any room and would make a wonderful addition to a foyer or garden.
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