This well-cast, well-proportioned vessel is related in form, style of flat-cast decoration, and traces of black inlay, to three vessels illustrated by R.W. Bagley, Shang Ritual Bronzes in the Arthur M. Sackler Collections, Washington D.C., 1987, pp. 464-467: pl. 86, a ding in the Sackler Collection; fig. 86.1, in the Nelson Gallery, Kansas City and fig. 86.2, in the Fitzwillliam Museum, Cambridge. As with the present example, each has a wide band of taotie masks on the body and pendent blades on the legs, but a narrow upper register decorated with small dragons in profile, rather than the rare combination of whorl motif and hooked serpents in the band of the present example. The author assigns the two latter ding to the beginning of the Anyang period, based on the intricacy of the taotie masks, the interesting dragons in the narrow upper register and the more complex mouth of the taotie masks, especially that of the Fitzwilliam example, which like the present example, indicates teeth.
The whorl motif in the upper register is seen on other ding, but flanked by dragons, not serpents and combined with a lower register of pendent cicada-filled blades not taotie masks. See the ding illustrated by Y. Mino and J. Robinson, Beauty and Tranquility: The Eli Lilly Collection of Chinese Art, Indianapolis, 1983, pl. 24 and another illustrated by A. Leth, Catalogue of Selected Objects of Chinese Art in the Museum of Decorative Art, Copenhagen, 1959, no. 7.