Skip to main content


Artist/maker unknown, Chinese
Depicted at the center of this plate is a qilin leaping through a landscape with a phoenix overhead. According to Chinese classical texts, the qilin is one of the four mythical animals—among the phoenix, tortoise, and dragon—that wield miraculous power. The appearance of the creature is considered an auspicious symbol of peace and the righteousness of a ruler.

Object Details

We are always open to learning more about our collections and updating the website. Does this record contain inaccurate information or language that you feel we should improve or change? Contact us here.

Please note that this particular artwork might not be on view when you visit. Don’t worry—we have plenty of exhibitions for you to explore.