Antique Chinese wood carving of Xuanwu the god or emperor.
Carved from a single piece of wood, polychrome painted and some gilt in places. He is seated upon a throne and has one foot upon a serpent and the other upon a turtle. According to the Qing Dynasty version of the story, after Xuanwu became an immortal, his stomach and intestines absorbed the essence of the earth. His viscera transformed into a demonic turtle and a demonic snake, who started to hurt people. No one could subdue the demonic animals. Eventually, Xuanwu returned to earth to subdue them. After defeating them, he later used them as his subordinates.
The piece remains in remarkable antique condition with age-appropriate wear and use. Late 19th Century.
Measurements: 26cm in height x 13cm wide x 10cm deep.
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