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A greyish-white and black jade carving of a cat, Ming dynasty, 17th century. Photo Christie’s Image Ltd 2008

Carved from the natural pebble form as a recumbent cat wrapped in a long cloth tied in a bow at its back, its eyes wide open in an intent gaze above its long whiskers, with its head resting on its front paws and its long tail flicked up onto its back, the stone of a mottled greyish-white color with some black inclusions; together with a small agate carving, 18th/19th century, in the form of a conch shell on a lotus leaf carved from the translucent mottled green portion of the stone, the reverse with a small bird grasping a leafy sprig in its mouth; 2 3/8 and 1 7/8 in. (6 and 4.8 cm.) long (2). Estimate $4,000 – $6,000. Price Realized $5,000

Provenance: The cat: Robert Hall, London, 5 April 1979.
The agate shell: Hugh M. Moss, Ltd., London. 

Christie’s. FINE CHINESE CERAMICS AND WORKS OF ART. 17 September 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza.