Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament

Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament

National Treasure

National Treasure Intro

The Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament is in the collection of the National Museum of Prehistory in Taiwan.

This Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament belongs to the Huagangshan Culture of Late Neolithic period, around 2,800 to 2,300 years ago. It was unearthed from the “Yanliao No. 1 Site” in Hualien County in 1994. Many jade tools and ornaments, mainly made of Taiwan jade, were unearthed at this site. These discoveries show that there were advanced techniques for making jade objects, this is especially clear from the Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament, which is one of the representative works from Huagangshan Culture.

This jade ornament has a three-dimensional shape, it is made from Taiwan jade (nephrite), which is of excellent quality, well-polished, and well-preserved, demonstrating the exquisite jade-making techniques and unique jade patterns from Taiwan’s prehistoric era. This object is of great historical, cultural, and artistic value.

Therefore, it was designated as a national treasure in 2014 on the basis that it has “special historical significance or can express traditional, ethnic or local cultural characteristics, and the special characteristics, techniques or style of a certain era.”

3D gallery:Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament from the Huagangshan

National Treasure Appreciation

The front of Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament

This is a rare three-dimensional jade ornament from Taiwan’s prehistoric period, measuring approximately 36.4mm in length, 27mm in width, 9.7mm in thickness, and weighing around 13g. The jade is of superb quality, and it resembles the shape of a frog.

Researchers believe that the object is a pendant, a thin cord would have been used as a strap, and the detailing is mainly on the front of the frog, where a pair of large eyes and bifurcated limbs in the shape of an upside-down U have been carved into the jade.

The back of Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament

On the back, there is a mouth-shaped indentation between the belly and the head of the frog, representing the frog’s mouth.

Left side.

Right side.

The Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament’s head.

The Frog-Shaped Jade Ornament’s the bottom of the foot.



The National Museum of Prehistory (NMP) began in 1980 with the construction of the new Taitung Station on the South Line Railway, which led to the discovery of the Peinan Site. The Peinan Site is the largest and most complete prehistoric settlement ever found in Taiwan, and has the largest slate coffin burial complex in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim.

In response to the call to preserve Taiwan’s cultural resources, the NMP was built to the south side of the Kangle Station in Taitung, and the original Peinan Site was turned into the Peinan Archaeological Site Park. The Museum of Archaeology, Tainan Branch of NMP was also established in the Southern Taiwan Science Park in Tainan, where there is the most abundant cultural layer in southwest Taiwan.All these precious materials can be viewed on the “National Museum of Prehistory’s Database.”

Recommended objects

By using the Taiwan glossary available on the Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT-Taiwan),
objects can be better understood by linking them to similar objects in global collections.