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Drum-Shaped Inkstone
tianjin 23
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

This ink stone was found earlier than three kinds of books of rubbings from the Northern Song Dynasty and brought great excitement in the circles of stone experts. It has a very important reference value, because no other documents have been found. It is one of the first-grade cultural relics in China assigned by the experts Qiao Yousheng, Jin Yumin and Yin Runsheng.

History of the Object
The inscription on the drum-shaped stone blocks is the earliest example of a carved text in China. It was carved on ten drum-shaped stone blocks of the Qin Dynasty with ten pieces of Chinese classical poems in "great seal characters". It has therefore great importance with respect to Chinese literature and the writing of history. There are altogether 434 characters on this ink stone (identical characters are not counted, 437 characters including characters which are not clear).

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Type
Calligraphy 
Materials
Stone 
Measurements
Width 18 cm. Height 10 cm.  
Creator name
Gu Congyi 
Creator date
1523—1588 
Where it was made
China 
Geography
China 
Time period
AD 16th century ~ AD 16th century 
Creation date
16th Century; 1523-1588 
Function
To make ink on 
Acquisition
Government official Gu Congyi bought this ink stone in the reign of Ming Emperor Jiaqing and carved inscriptions on the drum-shaped stone block. In the 46th year of the reign of Ming Emperor Qianlong (1781) this ink stone was owned by Cao Wenzhi. In the 21st year of the reign of Qing Emperor Daoguang (1841) it was sold to Zhu Shanqi by Cao Shaoli (the great grandson of Cao Wenzhi). In the year of 1935 Xu Shixiang purchased this ink stone for a high price in Beijing and gave it to Xu Shizhang. After the formation of the PRC in 1949 the descendants of Xu donated it to Tianjin Cultural Bureau. 
Copyright
 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Tian jin Museum 
Museum
Tianjin Museum 
Credit line
Allocated by the Tianjin Cultural Bureau 

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