Six Ritual Jades of Chinese Zodiac

7 months ago

Lot No. :ZG-210921
Centuries of Style:Shang dynasty (1*) (1600 – c. 1046 BC)
Feature:Ritual jade (2*), Chinese zodiac.
Source:Private collection
1* The Shang dynasty or Yin dynasty, according to traditional historiography, ruled in the Yellow River valley in the second millennium BC, succeeding the Xia dynasty and followed by the Zhou dynasty. The Shang ruled from 1556 to 1046 BC. More than 20,000 were discovered in the initial scientific excavations during the 1920s and 1930s, and over four times as many have been found since. The inscriptions provide critical insight into many topics from the politics, economy, and religious practices to the art and medicine of this early stage of Chinese civilization. The Shang dynasty is the oldest dynasty of Chinese history supported by archaeological evidence.
2* The oldest extant direct records date from around 1200 BC at Anyang, covering the reigns of the last nine Shang kings. Archaeological work at the Ruins of Yin which has been identified as the last Shang capital, uncovered eleven major Yin royal tombs and the foundations of palaces and ritual sites, containing weapons of war and remains from both animal and human sacrifices. Tens of thousands of bronze, jade, stone, bone, and ceramic artifacts have been obtained.


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