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Liu Haichan

Liu Haichan

劉海蟾

1300s

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Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk

Image: 105 x 38 cm (41 5/16 x 14 15/16 in.); Overall: 182.8 x 59.1 cm (71 15/16 x 23 1/4 in.)

Edward L. Whittemore Fund 1982.29.2

Did you know?

Because the immortal Liu Haichan is usually depicted with bangs, his eponym, liúhǎi 劉海, means "bangs" in Chinese.

Description

Liu Haichan is a Daoist immortal sometimes included in the Eight Immortals. He is often shown as a young man wearing bangs across his forehead. He was said to have lived during the Five Dynasties period (907–979) and left his position as a grand councilor to become a hermit. Usually depicted carrying a string of coins and accompanied by a three-legged toad, Liu Haichan became a god of wealth and his toad symbolizes wealth as well. In this scroll, Liu is teasing the three-legged toad with a string of coins tied to his waist

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