Antique Chinese Ancient

Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation

Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation
Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation

Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation

Antiques, Artifacts & Fine Collectibles. Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel (Gu).

Classic Taotie & Dragon Designs on Trumpet-form Gu. {Partial English Translation of Ancient Chinese Characters Provided}. The Sons Offer to the Ancestors this Bronze Drinking Vessel that contains Overflowing Wine. It is placed Underground in this Temple/Tomb as a Blessing and Memorial Offering from the Sons of this Noble Man. Translated inscription on this bronze Gu.

Ritual Bronze Wine Cup (Gu). 10 25.5 cm high x 5.75 (15 cm) wide on flared top x 3.75 (9.4 cm). Private collection in China and then Hong Kong.

First time for sale in the United States. This ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze drinking cup (called a Ku or Gu in Chinese) stands about 10 tall with a trumpet-shaped, flared mouth that is 5.75 wide. It was designed to hold warm offerings of wine to the ancestors and gods. It was would have been placed in a temple as a memorial offering by the wealthy and powerful sons of their departed father to ensure his safe journey to the afterlife over 3,000 years ago.

Bronze vessels, such as this gu, were made to honor royal ancestors. As early as the Shang dynasty, complex, beautifully decorated vessels for food and wine were placed in the tombs of the deceased to invoke blessings on the living. There are at least 30 main types of ritual vessels, which are grouped according to their function and use. They range in size from a few inches to over 4 feet high.

This ornate, wine cup is about 10 tall and has a trumpet-formed neck that is crisply cast with four blades on the top section. There are two masked monsters (Tao-Tie) cast on both the center and lower sections of the gu that are separated by narrow, notched flanges. In the bottom two sections, there are also four pairs of confronted dragons with elephant-like trunks. This ancient gu is heavily encrusted with earthen deposits, as well as a rich, authentic patina of red, blue, and green oxidation of the bronze that was buried for millennia in damp soil rich in with some green malachite and red cuprite encrustation.

Some of the bronze oxidation has been professionally removed by the previous collector from the flared bell of the gu in order to be able to read the wonderful pictographic characters (called Oracle Script) that tell us why this bronze vessel was created and for whom. It was a ritual bronze vessel that was presented the ancestors of a departed aristocrat during the Western Zhou period (1045--771 BC).

This gu is inscribed in three different locations: inside and outside the flared bell of the gu; and on the inside of the bottom casting. These characters are the oldest written language in Chinas long and magnificent history. Pinyin: g is type of ancient Chinese ritual bronze vessel from the Shang and Zhou dynasties. It was used to both drink wine and to offer ritual libations of wine to the ancestors. The rich blue-green surface, or patina, is due to the natural oxidation of the bronze over the centuries.

In their original form they would have been bright, reflective bronze. A gu is tall and slender, with a slightly flared base that tapers to a slim center section before widening again into a trumpet-like mouth, wider than the base. Its surface is often decorated with elaborate Tao-tie (photo # 3) and dragons (photo # 12) that were fierce mythological creatures thought to scare away evil spirits. Elegant gu wine vessels stand out due to their special shape and great historical significance. These ritual bronzes are tall and slim and this one has three, distinct sections.

After tapering towards the center, the shape opens up to a trumpet-like bell. The opening is broader than the base and gu have no handles. During the Western Zhou-Dynasty, the gu was a widely used shape. English Translation of Early Chinese Characters/PictogramsBronze Script Inscription. This 3,000 year-old ritual bronze vessel contains a number of inscriptions that were cast into this bronze gu when it was created.

The pictographic characters on these Shang Dynasty bronzes are the earliest form of a written language in ancient China. Modern archeologists call these early pictograms Oracle Bone Script or graphics or Bronze Script as they have been found as a permanent record that was written by scribes on both oracle bones and on ritual bronze artifacts.

As stated above, only some of the bronze oxidation has been professionally removed by the previous collector in order to be able to read the wonderful pictographic characters (called graphics) that tell us why this bronze vessel was created and for whom. To the best of my humble skills, here is an expanded translation of the six, graphics/pictograms that appear on the outside rim of the gu {see macro photos 2 & 11}. It is placed underground in a Temple/Tomb as a Blessing and Memorial Offering from the Sons of this Noble Man.

And here is a literal translation of the six, compound Bronze Script characters found in one quadrant of the top section. A Drinking Vessel for a noble man.

Ping : A vessel that sits on a stand in the ancestral temple, also proof or evidence. Bronze offering to the ancestors placed in a temple as a memorial offering for their offspring. A hole in the earth, a pit or in this case a tomb. The Sons offering to the ancestors. Note, that the two, horizontal lines to the right of the stick-figured man with a round head, means several sons (not just two) and it is also the auspicious number that pairs the Earth with Heaven.

The offering is shown being presented to the deceased ancestor. Note, that the small circle to the right of the stick figure is one of the symbols used in ancient times for the footprint of the ancestor. A spring gushing from the ground, ie overflowing with abundance. And Yin, which means to conceal or cover. On the other quadrant of the top section between the cast, vertical blades (see photos # 4-5) is another set of six, compound characters, but they are very faint and encrusted.

There are also about eight, large characters on the inside, top edge of the gu that typically is a dedication from the sons to their father, a king. However, these characters are very faint and encrusted with bronze oxidation.

It appears there are the characters for Zi and Long on the rimliterally Dragon Son. This memorial offering by the sons of this noble man would help insure that the sons were guided by the wisdom and power of the ancestors, and protected from evil spirits on Earth. We know that this particular vessel was commissioned by more than one son from the other inscription directly across from this one, on the other side of the flared mouth. And there appear to also be a third set of characters on both the outside and inside edges of the footed bottom section of the gu.

But again, these characters are very faint and heavily encrusted with earthen deposits and bronze oxidation. Similar examples in museums suggest that this inscription is a clan name of the makers. The fierce looking, mythological creatures cast in relief on the bottom two sections of this gu are called Tao-tie or Tao-tieh in Chinese, which.

Is pronounced TOW as is in tower" and TYUH that rhymes with "the. This zoomorphic beast was first appeared in Chinese mythology during the Hongshan Culture (3500 BC2100 BC) and was thought to be the 5. Of the Nine Sons of the Dragon. {Best seen in macro photo # 3}.

Little is known of the ancient meaning of the Tao-tie. He famous Tao-Tie is believed to have been a grand spirit monster that was thought to drive away evil spirits and protect the owner from harm. The extended eyes were thought to scare away evil spirits and the mouth could devour ones enemies in a single gulp.

The high-relief ridge that runs vertically down the wine vessel is the Tao-ties nose. Some experts believe that the mysterious Tao-tie has something to do with the death and the afterworld, as its image is commonly found on the vessels used for sacrifices. While other experts believe that the Tao-tie was meant to guard the entrance to the afterworld and to keep out evil spirits. The Tao-Tie cast into this wine vessel is late Shang Dynasty period correct and matches perfectly the examples on display in Beijing, the British Museum, at the Smithsonian's Arthur M.

Sackler Gallery, and other fine museums worldwide. Bronze Sacrificial Vessels in Ancient China. A skilled craftsman made this wine cup during what is called the Western Zhou Period. This ritual bronze vessel would have held rice or millet wine as a sacrifice to the Gods to honor the Spirit of an elite member of Zhou society as he journeyed towards the afterlifeHeavenor Tien in Chinese. Originally cast as a spectacular ritual wine vessel for a high ranking member of the Zhou dynasty aristocracy, it is outstanding for its details, the cast inscription/dedication, the quality of its decoration, and the rich azurite-blue patina that is so coveted by collectors of ancient bronzes.

The stylistic and technical advances in casting ritual, bronze vessel, as well as the dedication cast into the sides of the wine warming cup, suggest that piece was crafted during the Western Zhou Period. In ancient China, bronze vessels played an important role in ceremonies and rituals for rulers and high officials. The ritual books of ancient China minutely describe who was allowed to use what kinds of sacrificial vessels and in what size and quantity. Vessels have been discovered that are over 5 feet high and weigh as much as 4 tons! Bronze production was carefully controlled by the emperor and bronze vessels were meant only for the elite aristocracy and their immediate families.

The Chinese inscribed all kinds of bronze items with three main motif types: demons, symbolic animals, and abstract symbols. The creation of magnificent bronze vessels was highly labor-intensive, and therefore its use was confined to that of the most important rituals of ancient Shang and Zhou kings and aristocrats. The oldest Shang dynasty vessels were used in rituals centered on the sacrificial offering of food and wine to ancestors. Like elaborate banquets for the dead, foods which included meats and grains as well as rice or millet wine and sacrificial water were prepared and presented in bronze vessels and then ritually offered at family altars, often located in a separate structure within a family compound. As British scholar, Jessica Rawson, explains. These were essentially family ceremonies in which both the dead and the living took part.

The dead remained an integral part of everyday society, requiring the kind of attention also given to living members of the family. The banquets or rituals were a show of respect to the dead so as to ensure that they would help their descendants by interceding on their behalf with the gods and spirits. Without help from the dead, and a proper acknowledgement of their role, human affairs might fail and their descendants suffer. This was especially so of kings, whose ancestors not only had the power to affect the fortunes of their descendants, but were semi-godlike, having power and influence over the entire population as well. Thus the most elaborate rituals-- more like ceremonies of state than the private rituals held by aristocratic families-- were performed by ancient kings.

Highly decorated bronze vessels created in sets played a leading role in these rituals-- containing sacrifices and hosting their preparation. The Chinese ancestors believed that the design of the ornaments could communicate with divinities and frighten demons as well. Therefore, to enshrine the bronze ware in the temple or tomb would do something good to them either bring them good luck or ward off evil spirits.

Is still heavily encrusted with earthen deposits, as well as authentic red and blue-green oxidation of the bronze that was buried for millennia in damp soil that was rich in cuprite, azurite, and malachite. It is in as found condition. It has been in a private collection in China and Hong Kong for at least 50 years.

Undocumented reports suggest it was found by farmers in 1938 and has been in private collections since that time. Museums and modern archeological studies usually use the general term copper alloy instead of just the term bronze to describe these ancient treasures, as many other elements (such as tin, lead, zinc, iron, and even arsenic) were added to the copper to form different strengths of types of bronze items. Ancient bronze artifacts such as this gu vessel are probably about 80% copper and 20% tin, while modern bronze is closer to 88% copper and 12% tin. It has a wonderful old, patina that is absolutely fabulous: areas of a blue-green patina from the azurite and malachite in the surrounding soil.

This combination of colors forms a fantastic patina that is typical of bronze that has been buried for over 1,000 years. Close examination with a microscope under natural and black light reveal it to be 100% authentic and cast by hand in a sand mold. One interesting property of bronze is that once it has oxidized superficially, a copper oxide layer is formed on the surface and essentially protects the object from further damaging corrosion. This protective layer turns in another compound, called copper carbonate for you scientists out there, which protects most bronze pieces from further corrosion.

I have carefully examined this item under magnification and it shows authentic and original signs of weathering and ground contact that help to further authenticate it as an ancient piece. It shows minor oxidation and is in very good condition. You will not be disappointed!

It is a museum quality, ancient Chinese work of art. It is a wonderful piece and would look great displayed next to your other fine ancient Chinese jade and bronze pieces! Museum of Chinese History, Beijing. The Ancestral Landscape , David N.

The Great Bronze Age of China , edited by Wen Fong, MET, 1980. Changhua Annals of the Republic of China (19111949). Minneapolis Institute of Arts, online collection. It will come with a Certificate of Authenticity (COA) from Ancient Civilizations. Their beauty and investment value are not comparable to this ancient ritual bronze that is about 3,000 years old.

I guarantee this wine cup is authentic and original! The item "Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation" is in sale since Saturday, March 30, 2019. This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\China\Glasses & Cups".

The seller is "houghton-usa" and is located in Sequim, Washington. This item can be shipped to United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia.

  • Type: Ritual Wine Vessel (Gu)
  • Region of Origin: China
  • Age: Western Zhou Period
  • Primary Material: Bronze
  • Original/Reproduction: Original
  • Color: Bronze


Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Wine Vessel Cup (Gu) W. Zhou Dynasty + Translation