The lion, a regal creature with great power, hunting abilities, a strong family structure and majestic appearance is not just the “King of the Jungle” protecting the land and all the animals within it, but also the King of the Home.
The symbolic representation of this royal animal can be see in the stone lion we see guarding the entrance way of homes, estates, palaces and buildings has a rich history in design. These exterior fixtures have their origin in China, they were known as Foo Dogs or Shishi meaning “stone lion.” These ancient symbols stood outside of imperial palaces, imperial buildings, government buildings, temples and homes of the elite.
They represented protection, often in pairs, which symbolized both protection and stability in the home and those dwelling within it.
They are made of stone, bronze and marble shown in various sizes, some are very large, almost the size of the home they are protecting.
The guardian lion can be found all over the world, an excellent example in the United States can be found outside of the New York Public Library in NYC.
The symbolic image of the lion, with its mouth fiercely or sitting with a stoic posture and strong presence has transitioned to not only exterior design demonstrating its protective quality but can be found inside the home or building as a watchful guardian for the space and the dwellers within it.