Mandarin / Rank badge with Silver pheasant, worn by a wife on the front of the robe
This is an antique Mandarin badge worn by a civil official of the fifth rank, members of which were either a deputy supervisor of instruction at the Hanlin Academy, an assistant instructor or librarian at either the Guozijian or Hanlin Academy, an assistant director of a board or court or, finally, a circuit censor, whose responsibility was to be the eyes and ears of the Emperor in reporting cases of abuse or corruption.
Mandarin badges, worn by both civilian officials and military to denote rank, were introduced in 1391 during the Ming Dynasty During the Qing Period (1644-1912), they were worn as squares, both on the front and back of a garment Each rank was identified by the use of a different bird or animal The fifth rank badge of a civil official is distinguished by the use of the Silver Pheasant - the silver pheasant being identified by its five tail feathers, not necessarily by its color This badge is embroidered in gold and silver-colored metallic threads on brown silk silk and accented with red, blue, light blue, orange, white and purple thread The sun disk, which appears at the upper left, is made with coral beads It should be noted that wives of officials wore badges, correspondent to their husband's badges, where the sun disk on theirs would be placed at the upper right, to mirror their husbands’ badge, when sitting next to them Attaining rank in Imperial China was possible only through the passing of a series of difficult examinations, but successful candidates were rewarded with prestigious appointments.
PERIOD 19th Century (1850-1899)
DIMENSIONS HEIGHT: 11.25″ DEPTH: 0.1″ WIDTH: 10.5″
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