Description This headdress was likely once worn by the Empress Dowager Cixi (1835-1908), the effective ruler of China during the later years of the Qing Dynasty. It is an exquisite example of Chinese decoration and the symbolism used to express one's rank. The small phoenixes emerging from the surface represent the empress, while the countless pearls and gemstones mark this piece as something special for the adornment of the highest-ranking woman in Chinese society.
- Bedazzled: 5,000 Years of Jewelry from the Walters Art Museum. Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville; The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota; The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2006-2009.
Provenance Auguste F. Chamot Collection; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1907 [mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1907
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