Date and Other Problems of the Turquoise Auspicious Animals in the Collection of the Museum of Shang Period Yanshi City-site

A turquoise-sculptured animal in the Museum of Shang Period Yanshi City-site has been taken as a Xia Period jade by some researchers. However, in archaeology this type of ornament has not been encountered among the precise Xia and Shang cultural relics but often occurred in the Han to the Southern and Northern Dynasties periods and must have been used as pendants. It was a common practice that the tiger, the lion and the so-called bixie, a winged beast, were depicted as subjects of ornaments, so this type of artifact should be called by the joint name "auspicious animals. " According to some researchers, this type of ornament should be attributed to the foreign products or elements for usually its material is amber and its subject is the lion, but the available relevant archaeological data do not form forceful support to this viewpoint.