VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Ritual ding type food container
RCH 10A
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

At 57 cm in height, this enormous food container is the largest and most important archaic bronze of this type in any European collection.

History of the Object
More than three thousand years ago, bronze casting had already developed into a master skill. The precious material was used almost exclusively to make containers for food and wine employed in ritual sacrifices offered to ancestors. Venerating one's forefathers was one of the most important components of Chinese religious life. It was believed that deceased ancestors continued to exert an influence over the lives of their descendants. For this reason, sacrifices had to be made to them in order to keep them favourably disposed. The majority of these bronze vessels were found in the richly equipped graves of the members of the upper class.

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Type
Archaeological 
Materials
Bronze 
Measurements
Height 57.2 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
China 
Geography
China 
Time period
BCE 11th century ~ BCE 10th century 
Creation date
BCE; 11th Century BCE - 10th century BCE; Early Western Zhou Dynasty 
Function
Ritual food container 
Acquisition
Jingguangtang Collection; Christie's New York, 1997 
Copyright
Museum Rietberg Zürich 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Museum Rietberg Zürich 
Museum
Museum Rietberg 
Credit line
Museum Rietberg Zürich, Gift of Alice and Pierre Uldry 

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