A pair of unglazed pottery models of earth spirits

Tang Dynasty, Early 7th century, China

Height: 101.6 cm and 91.4 cm, 40 inches and 36 inches

Each is modelled as a fabulous and terrifying creature - and seated on its haunches upon a square base. One earth spirit has claw feet, scales like those on a dragon along the spine, and large ears; there is a sunburst of stylised hair around its face, bulging eyes, and a large detachable horn above the forehead.

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