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Brass (?) object of possible Asian origin?

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Bumblebee's items1 of 2What is this strange pocket-watchlike object?What is this strange pocket-watchlike object?
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    Posted 7 years ago

    Bumblebee
    (2 items)

    The object is about 20 centimeters high of a solid and heavy material (possibly brass?).

    It is engraved by hand with several lotus (?) decorations, and something that seems to represent a story with a dragon in a band around the middle.

    The inside (not pictured) is simply hollow and smooth, with only markings of tools that seemed to be used to shape it.

    As visible on the first picture, some of the feet seem to have horizontal deep notches / damage.

    It's been in my grandma's family for as long as she can recall (she turned 82 last week). It was used as a decorative item on the windowsill of the room she shared with her sisters in the Netherlands, and with her ever since.

    I always used to think it was some kind of bell, but now that I know that the inside does not have any signs that something could be attached, I have no clue.

    Unsolved Mystery

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    Comments

    1. Bumblebee, 7 years ago
      I found somewhat similar objects on the internet listed as "antique Chinese brass bell", but no mention of it's function.
    2. whatisit, 7 years ago
      Perhaps it is a bell that would be struck on the outside? It is very nice and unique. You've got my curiosity up.
    3. eddymeese eddymeese, 7 years ago
      I love this object and was also curious...wasn't sure if Chinese or Japanese? Googled "antique Chinese bell" and found a similar item. Also found a current ebay item, same general shape but appears older than yours. In any case, likely to be Chinese as you suspected!

      http://www.ebay.com/sch/Bells-/162941/i.html?_dcat=162941&Age=Pre%252D1800&Original%252FReproduction=Original
    4. Bumblebee, 7 years ago
      Yeah, China seems to be the best bet so far!

      I also found more closely related examples:

      This one appears to me as a new-knockoff version of the concept:
      http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Chinese-China-Brass-Foo-Dog-Bell-/161407072194?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item25949c77c2

      This one seems to be more along the same lines of messiness, sealing between the handle/bell and the general oldness:
      http://www.ebay.com/itm/Antquie-Chinese-Brass-Bell-Chased-/161359037445?pt=Asian_Antiques&hash=item2591bf8405

      I prodded by grandma some more over the phone today (after telling her about the ID on the 10-second-stopwatch), and she said that the thing had already been in the family at least since before her grandfather (her father is born in 1910, his father in 1882), which would make it predate at least the 1880's.
    5. GTBOI GTBOI, 7 years ago
      I know of it being a BELL not sure CHINESE for the fact my brass are all HAND ME DOWNS, I have one but not one to tell me anything, all I remember is that my granny used to use it to WELCOME the NEW YR.
    6. Sunnybrook Sunnybrook, 7 years ago
      A very cool bell. It's all the better that you have memories of it with your grandma. :)

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