Belt Hook, Warring States period, 4th-3rd century BCE. Gilt bronze with crystal and glass inlay, 1 5/8 x 8 1/2 x 1 11/16 in. (4.13 x 21.59 x 4.29 cm). Gift of Ruth and Bruce Dayton 96.52.1 ©2014 Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 2400 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55404
Reportedly discovered at Chin-ts’un in Henan province, this elaborately decorated hook has three crystal bosses set over comma spirals with smaller green glass bosses interspersed between entwined chilong dragons. Large monster masks are at each end of the decorative field, and the long hook issuing from the mouth of one mask ends in a turned-back dragon head. The concave underside is left ungilded and is inlaid with scrollwork in silver wire. Richly decorated belt fasteners such as this made stunning accoutrements to the luxurious silk costumes of the Warring States period.