While dragons are symbols of power, they are never seen as frightful or evil in
Our blue and white dragon tray is a classic “double dragon” design. The two facing dragons represent “a happy reunion.” Courtly garments from the Qing Dynasty (1644 to 1911) often incorporated the same double dragon motif in silk embroidery. The motif can also be used for family ties or to show strong friendship.
The tray also includes a pearl painted at the center of the two dragons. Pearls are associated with wealth, luck, prosperity and sometimes wisdom. Often Chinese dragons are depicted with a flaming pearl clutched in their claw or under their chin. Artistically it is both a potent symbol of a dragon’s power as well as a play on simple monetary value. The flaming pearl in particular is one of the eight sacred treasures from Buddhist and Taoist traditions and it is said to have the power to grant wishes.
In ancient times, well before pearl farming or cultivating, the precious commodity was rare to an extreme. Quite simply any one who found a pearl also found a great personal fortune. Thus the folkloric attribution of a wish granting power to pearls. Cultures throughout the Orient consider the pearl as a jewel to fulfill all wishes. Buddhists consider the pearl one of their divine seven treasures. In
Surrounding the dragons on our tray are an assortment of traditionally stylized clouds. Dragons and clouds have a close association in
Our simple tray is full of expressive imagery when you know where to look. Even the shape is intended to evoke the shape of a cloud, further enhancing its good luck power. It is made of porcelain with blue cobalt oxide under glaze and a clear glossy over glaze. It is a fine example of Chinese porcelain based on the centuries of production that began with the Ming Dynasty (1368 to 1644). Because porcelain is a dense stoneware it is naturally dishwasher and microwave safe. The trays are available both in the store and online.