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Bianbo with Panchi Pattern (Bronze bells) (4 bells)

Generally well preserved. Part of the suspension loop (niu) is broken and missing. Made of bronze. The surface of the instrument is light blue or blue mixed with brown and it is covered in mud and patina. These bells have similar shapes and structures. The body of each instrument is slim and long with its cross-section resembling two arched tiles closed together. The central panel (zheng), the areas (zhuan) between the studs, studs and gu have clearly defined sections. The bottom rim (yu) is flat. The upper surface (wu) is flat and has a suspension loop named niu in the shape of two dragons. The niu is decorated with patterns such as S shapes, scales, small dots, clouds and swirls. The wu is decorated with fine cloud patterns. One side features diamond-shaped patterns. The zhuan and gu are decorated with stylised panchi patterns [in legend, panchi is a curled dragon without a horn]. There are 36 studs (raised half-spheres) with fine dots on them, as well as triangles and S-shaped cloud patterns at the bottom of each one. These are finely cast bronze instruments, a set that is relatively complete. These bianbo bells are from Chu, and were rarely seen in the South Chu region [Chu was a hegemonic, Zhou dynasty era state. Founded in 1030 BC].

  • Measurements:Total height (broken): 31.6cm, height of the niu: 7.7cm, width of the top of the niu: 7.0cm, width of the bottom of the niu: 16.0cm, horizontal diameter of the wu: 15.8cm, vertical diameter of the wu: 12.8cm, mid-body length: 23.5cm, length of the xian: 23.5cm, distance between the two xian points: 17.3cm, distance between the two sides of the centre of the gu: 14.2cm, thickness of the middle of the gu: 0.5cm, thickness of the sides of the gu: 0.8cm, height of each stud: 0.6cm, weight: 2.70kg