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Xinhua Zheng with Dragon-phoenix Motif (Bronze duo)

This bell has heavy rust and corrosion. The ring (niu) on the handle (yong) is broken. The bell has dark green colour on the surface. The body of the bell is shaped like a combined pair of tiles. The mouth (yu) is slightly curved. The handle (yong) is flattened and is solid in the middle. It has an oval cross-section, larger around the top and smaller at the bottom. Cloud patterns can be seen near the underside (wu), which has a double-bodied dragon design in the middle and a pair of phoenixes on either side. The dragon’s head is at the back. The body of the bell is decorated with multi-line angular shaped leaf patterns and cloud patterns. There is a band of cloud pattern decoration near the mouth (yu). The rim is decorated with a basket-weave pattern. Based on the style of its decorative patterns, this bell is likely to be a music instrument used by the Chu people during the early Warring States period.

  • Date:
    Early Warring States period
  • Maker:
  • Collection:
    Hunan Museum
  • Inventory number:
  • Place of production:
  • Hornbostel-Sachs classification:111.242 Bells
  • Culture:
  • Period:
  • Materials:Bronze
  • Specific materials/techniques:
  • Decorative elements:
  • Inscriptions:
  • Hornbostel-Sachs category:111.242 Bells
  • Repository:Hunan Museum
  • Measurements:Total height (broken): 23.3cm, horizontal diameter of the wu: 8.3cm, vertical diameter of the wu: 6.3cm, thickness of the bell: 0.70-0.75cm, length of the yong (broken): 10.6cm, distance between the two sides of the centre of the gu: 8.0cm, weight: 1.2kg Mid-body length: 11.1cm, distance between the two xian points: 9.8cm, length of the xian: 12.9cm