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What is a Qilin? It is a hoofed Chinese chimerical (fanciful mythical) creature known throughout various East Asian cultures. It is said to appear sometimes with the arrival of a sage. Considered a good omen, it brings rui (serenity or prosperity). It varies in form, but is often depicted as a fiery deer with scales and an ox-like tail. Westerners sometimes refer to it as a “Chinese unicorn.” Often it is carved into hardwood furniture or applied as decoration to metal and ceramic objects d’art.