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[22 Apr 2010 | Comments Off on Lotus and Crane Rectangular Pots: Spirit of New Era | 799 views]
Lotus and Crane Rectangular Pots: Spirit of New Era

This pair of pots are relics unearthed in 1923 at the Great Tomb of King of Zheng State in Xinzheng, Henan Province. Their design and patterns are almost identical to each other. One of them is now at its home province – Henan Museum; the other one is at The Palace Museum in Beijing.

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[31 Mar 2010 | Comments Off on Bronze Jin with Cloud Designs: Proof of Ancient Alcohol Ban | 1,239 views]
Bronze Jin with Cloud Designs: Proof of Ancient Alcohol Ban

Jin, literally means “forbidden”. It was used from early West Zhou Dynasty to Warring States Period.

Why was it named “forbidden”? Because the Zhou People concluded from history that both Xia and Shang Dynasties were failed because of alcohol abuse. So in Zhou Dynasty, the King announced the first Alcohol Ban in Chinese history: Wine Rules.

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[11 Mar 2010 | Comments Off on Crystal Cup: Unraveling the Mystery of the Age of Hangzhou City | 788 views]
Crystal Cup: Unraveling the Mystery of the Age of Hangzhou City

The exact age of Hangzhou City is still unknown. People always say Hangzhou City has a long history of about 2000+ years. However, 2200 years ago, east to West Lake, where Hangzhou City is located now, is still under water. So the ancient Hangzhou city should be originated in the hills to the west and south of West Lake.

With the discovery of this crystal cup, which is a precious vessel that symbolizes the owner’s unusually high social status, historians hypothesis that …

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[14 Jan 2010 | Comments Off on Jade Cong King: A Tribute to Mother Earth | 2,633 views]
Jade Cong King: A Tribute to Mother Earth

Let’s take this Jade Cong of Liangzhu culture as an example. It is square outside and round inside, with a middle hole. Experts have speculated that it may represent our ancestors’ “hemispherical dome” belief. The square means earth, the round circle means heaven. And Cong has both of them; it is a symbol of connection between heaven and earth.

At the time, every time when a good harvest, or memorial day, they held a grand sacrificial ceremony. Liangzhu ancestors would use this Jade Cong to communicate with heaven and earth gods.

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[14 Dec 2009 | Comments Off on Red Lacquer Wood Bowl: The Origin of Lacquerware | 1,401 views]
Red Lacquer Wood Bowl: The Origin of Lacquerware

The discovery of this red lacquer bowl indicates that at least six or seven thousand years ago, Chinese ancestors had been using lacquer to decorate the surface of apparatus. China is the first country in the world that became aware of lacquer and used it for decoration. And this bowl proves it.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art at New York City has a great collection of Ming and Qing Dynasty Chinese lacquerwares. Go have a look!