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Chinese famille rose figure of Liu Hai and the money toad, Qianlong (1736-95), with a laughing Liu Hai standing upon a rockwork base, with right arm outstretched, one foot upon his three-legged toad and a string of money held in his left hand, wearing a red open-chested robe with gilt foliate roundels and a further string of coins hanging from his belt.
Liu Haichan is a Daoist immortal said to have lived during the 10th century and revered as a bringer of good fortune and wealth. He is often depicted with a three-legged toad known as the Chanchu (蟾蜍; ‘toad in the moon’) or Jinchan (金蟾; ‘money toad’). Though textual evidence concerning this semi-mythical figure is scarce, he is thought to have been a Minister of State and writer of alchemical texts, converting to Daoism later in life and spending his latter years roaming the countryside as an esoteric teacher in search of self-cultivation and the secret of immortality. According to legend, he successfully obtained this secret with the help of the Chanchu, which could produce a pearl with the power to transform an ordinary mortal into a Daoist xian. Liu Hai is frequently depicted with his foot upon the Chanchu's head, in a highly auspicious pose known as 'Liu Hai sporting with the toad' (劉海戲蟾), said to bring about good fortune and wealth. As the story goes, the Chanchu would frequently dive into a nearby well or pond, but would invariably be tempted back by Liu Hai's string of golden coins.