15 September 2011
A RARE INLAID BRONZE SPOON
LATE SPRING AND AUTUMN/EARLY WARRING STATES PERIOD, 6TH-5TH CENTURY BC, SOUTHERN CHINA, CHU STATE
The shallow, oval bowl cast with an openwork design of interlaced dragons, the slender faceted handle attached at the opposite end with openwork terminal of interlaced snakes with ribbed and granulated bodies enhanced by hardstone inlay, with smooth dark grey patina and malachite encrustation
7¾ in. (19.7 cm.) long, box
Acquired in Hong Kong, 1993.
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The Glorious Traditions of Chinese Bronzes, Singapore, 2000, no. 51.
Metal, Wood, Water, Fire and Earth, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 2002-2006.
As the bowl is pierced, it is very likely that this elegant spoon was used for straining liquids, probably for some ritual purpose. The style of casting of the dragons relates it to bronzes made in the Chu State.
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