chinese-thai gold box

Vintage Jewellery Box from Bangkok’s Chinatown.

The fire of passion bursts out as these two mythical Chinese creatures meet atop the vintage painted metal box from a Chinese-Thai goldsmith.

Musically named Hang Tong Lang Hong is a famous gold shop in the heart of Yaowarat, Bangkok’s Chinatown. The Thai term for a gold shop is ‘hang tong’. Lang is Chinese for ‘dragon’. Hong is Chinese for ‘swan’, but the Chinese swan is also known as the ‘phoenix’. (If you know Thai, you will recognize that hong is also the Thai word for swan. In Thai, this particular mythical creature is called a hong jin, a ‘Chinese swan’.)

The dragon is male; the phoenix, female. Together they are a yin-yang metaphor symbolizing marital bliss. Perhaps what arises when you buy your wife jewellery from Hang Tong?


vintage dragon phoenix