Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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Figure of a phoenix

  • loan



  • phoenix

    Mythical bird known as hōō in Japan. The Islamic tradition appropriated the far-eastern iconography of the phoenix and used it to represent another mythical bird, the simurgh.


    • currently in research collection

Objects are sometimes moved to a different location. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis. Contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular object on display, or would like to arrange an appointment to see an object in our reserve collections.


Publications online

  • The Barlow Collection by the University of Sussex

    The Barlow Collection

    The piece is carved in archaistic style.

    The yellowish-beige jade has some darker patches. The solidly carved bird is shown reclining on an oval plinth, with pointed beak, small ears, a long curling crest and long feathers protruding from its cheeks. The wings are raised in relief and joined in front by a flat strap across the neck. A long fan-shaped tail with curling feathers protrudes from under the wings, and angular scroll motifs are replacing the legs. Stylized feathers are engraved at the neck and tail, but the other parts are decorated with abstract key-fret and archaistic scroll motifs. The flat plinth is plain.

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