This is a small, fine example of a Han hu wine storage vessel, buried for the afterlife. The bulbous body narrows sharply to a slender waisted neck and covered with a dark green lead glaze.
This jar would have been placed in a tomb in north-central China during the Western Han dynasty (206 B.C.E.–9 C.E.). It is based on the hu bronze wine vessel shape, particularly inlaid bronzes from the late Shang dynasty through the Warring States (472–221 B.C.E.) periods.
During the Han, a variety of cults and belief systems existed. Some systems aimed to prolong life, others to provide for continued life in the tomb, still others assumed the presence of immortal kingdoms to which the soul was transported. Since bronze and precious materials were banned for burial, ceramics were substituted. This had the practical effect of making the tombs less attractive to looters.
- Origin | China
- Dimensions | 4.5"Dia x 6"H
- Age | 206BC - 220AD
- Material | Terracotta
- ID | RHS023
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