Tomb Guardian

Tang dynasty
Shaanxi History Museum, Xi'an

This mythological guardian, armed like a warrior and glazed in jewel-like colors, triumphs over an earth spirit at his feet. His head is crowned by projecting horns and phoenix, a combination that identifes him as a tomb guardian of the southern quarter. These figures were usually placed around the entrance to the tomb chamber or around the coffin (Paludan, p. 114).