incense clock

Three-tiered rectangular powdered incense clock with lid made of white copper, paktong (a silver-white alloy consisting of copper, zinc and nickel), and with copper trimming, comprising eight component parts. The bottom tier is supported on four scrolled feet and decorated with an engraved landscape design on the sides; the upper tier has engraved floral motifs and butterflies and scrolls on the sides of the lid. The top of the lid has a perforated eight-trigram encircling a yin-yang symbol at the centre, with cash designs at four corners and flower heads on sloping sides. The bottom tier held powdered incense. The upper tier held a fine layer of white wood ash as a bed for the incense. The incense seal is made of two parts that create a shou (longevity) character depression for the incense trail and is set with two upright copper handles. A square copper tamper plate, with handle, is mounted on top and is used to compact the powdered incense. Accompanying the clock are a miniature shovel and a bird-shaped scraper for pouring and scraping powered incense or wood ash.

This type of object was once used for time keeping, but was later used by monks or scholars in meditation and for aesthetic pleasure.

Collection Information

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