Jade from the Kun Mountain: on Symbolism of Jade in the Han Dynasty


  • Jan VRHOVSKI Charles University, Prague




jade, symbolism, Han dynasty, Baihu tong, Guanzi


The article represents a discussion on the use and background of the symbol of jade (yu 玉) as reflected in various sources from the Han (漢, 206 BCE–220 CE) dynasty. The present article further attempts to shed some light on how at the time the above-mentioned symbol was used by various schools of thought: from Confucianism to the so-called non-Confucian currents of thought (Daoist sources and examples of synthesis of ideas pertaining to different traditions/currents), and last but not least the earliest literary vestiges of Buddhism in China. Consequently, the article endeavours to give a modest overview of the various connotations of the symbol of jade within a certain point in history, from which all the future ways of applications and use of the symbols of jade, be it in philosophical, literary or religious works, have been derived from.


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Author Biography

  • Jan VRHOVSKI, Charles University, Prague

    PhD candidate at the Department for Asian and African studies, Philosophical Faculty, University of Ljubljana

    PhD candidate at the Institute for East Asian Studies, Philosophical Faculty, Charles University, Prague

    Researcher at CCK-ISC, Charles University, Prague


31. 01. 2019

How to Cite

VRHOVSKI, Jan. 2019. “Jade from the Kun Mountain: On Symbolism of Jade in the Han Dynasty”. Asian Studies 7 (1): 293-311. https://doi.org/10.4312/as.2019.7.1.293-311.

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