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Decorative Designs in Chinese Art 中国文物的纹饰

Fire Design 火纹
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Ivory 象牙

In historic times ivory was an important medium for art. Today, because of the endangered status of elephants and other animals killed for ivory, trade is restricted by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). This page discusses historic artifacts in museums only.

Carved ivory dragon
乾隆(1735〜1796苏州博物馆
Carved ivory dragon
Qing, Qianlong reign (1735—1796), Suzhou Museum

Grapes, as on the ivory box below, are symbolic of seeking happiness.

ivory
(1644〜1911北京首都博物馆
Carved rectangular ivory box with grape design
Qing (1644—1911), Capital Museum, Beijing

The carving below shows a part of an entire elephant tusk with a carving of a crowd of people.

Ivory tusk with a carving of a crowd of people
苏州博物馆
Ivory tusk with a carving of a crowd of people
Suzhou Museum
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