I recently acquired a new large inkstone, weighing about 4 pounds and with a fine example of dragon carving. I had to lightly sand off the wax layer on the grind surface, so I know it is a newer modern piece. There is a large seal carved into the bottom: enter image description here

  1. Can anyone help with a translation? I assume it is the carver's name, but my knowledge of seal script is not sufficient.
  2. Is there anything in the seal text that might be used to search for the geographic or company origin of the inkstone? I tried a google-style image search and found it in a Pinterest link that no longer exists.
  3. Is there anything in the seal text that says what the original stone's origin might be?

Thanks to any who can help with this. Oh, here is a pic of the inkstone: enter image description here

1 Answer 1


I can tell you with certainty that yours is an imitation, because "Chuanxin Jiming" ( "傳心基命") is the seal of Emperor Jiaqing of the Qing Dynasty. The inkstone in your second picture has dragons on it, and the dragon pattern is usually for the emperor.

"傳心基命" seal, Jiaqing Qing Dynasty, made of sapphire, Yunlongniu square seal, Chinese seal script. The surface is 4.1cm square, the overall height is 7.3cm, and the new height is 3.1cm. "傳心" refers to inheriting the heart method of ancient sages and sages. The objects of worship in a palace called 傳心 Palace in the palace are Fuxi, Shennong, Xuanyuan, Yao, Shun, Yu, Tang, Wen, Wu, etc. Zhou Gong, Confucius, etc., can be evidence. "Basic life" comes from "Poetry·Zhou Song·Hao Tian You Cheng Fate" "Su Ye Ji Ming You Mi", which originally praised King Zhou Cheng for his efforts to continue his civil and military career, and later it was mostly used to praise the emperor's virtue. Emperor Jiaqing used this as a text to engrave a seal, which has its own profound meaning. This seal is matched with "嘉庆御笔" and "毓庆宫" to form a group, and several sets have been engraved. In the 毓庆宫 where he lived. Through the other two seals that match it, we can get a glimpse of the life of Jiaqing Emperor 毓庆宫. Here, on the one hand, he has to carry out some artistic activities, enjoy the pen and ink, so he has the seal of "嘉庆御笔"; Emperor Jiaqing himself said: "Passing down the basic destiny of the heart, you can see the secret of the emperor's heart." Of course it is the heart of a sage and the order of Qianlong. At this time, Emperor Jiaqing honored Emperor Qianlong's mission like heaven, and at the same time tried to cheer up. This is similar to the case where King Cheng of Zhou used his own efforts to carry forward and inherit the foundations created by King Wen and King Wu. It can be said that this Fang Baoxi basically reflects the real life and psychological state of Jiaqing Emperor 毓庆宫 during his education period.

Imitations can be made of any material, and you cannot judge the material by these words. It is nothing more than an imitation of the seal used by the emperor.

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