Material and Medium: ivory, mother of pearl, copper alloy, enamel, amber, silk, wood, tortoiseshell
Dimensions: Overall (in case): 45 x 360 x 570mm (1 3/4 x 14 3/16 x 22 7/16in.)
Overall (fan only): 320 x 510mm (12 5/8 x 20 1/16in.)
Department: Decorative Art
Accession Number: 2008.51
This delicate rigid fan is made of plaited ivory strands decorated with mother-of-pearl, soapstone and garnet.
The handle was probably made in the port city of Canton (now Guangzhou), famous for its enamelling skills. The design is of a bat flying over the sea and a peach tree growing out of a cliff. In Chinese, the word 'bat' is a homophone for 'happiness' and the word 'peach' stands for 'longevity'. The whole decoration illustrates the traditional Chinese birthday greeting: 'May your happiness be as deep as the Eastern Sea and may you live to be as old as the Southern Mountain'.
Therefore this fan was probably made as a birthday gift.Display Location: