Object Title

Dragon spear (kunlong dao)

Dragon spear (kunlong dao)



Object Number



Presented by J R Gaunt and Son Ltd, 1956.

Physical Description

The head of this weapon consists of a long, slender spear blade, incorporating a flat section which narrows before broadening slightly and merging into a section forming the spear tip, which has a flattened diamond cross-section. A three dimensional brass dragon is fitted to twine sinously around the broader, flatter section of the blade, coiling through brass cloud motifs. Some sections of this decorative attachment appear to have broken off in the past, including some cloud sections and the right hind leg of the dragon. Despite this, the dragon is moulded in pleasing detail; the nostrils, mane and scales are all engraved, and the eye sockets, horns, mane, back scales and flaming tail are all sculpted to give the impression of flowing movement as the beast unfurls around the blade. The spear head is mounted by a long socket with facetted moulding. The socket is fitted to a wooden haft which is stained dark brown.



OverallLength2425 mm
OverallWeight3.189 kg
HeadLength870 mm

Inscriptions and Marks



Places China/Asia

Bibliographic References

A. Janata, 'Zur Typologie chinesischer Stangenwaffen', Archiv f³r V÷lkerkunde 20, 1966, p. 12, fig. 1d.