VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Painted Pottery Basin with a Design of a Fish and a Human Face
1
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

A small hole in the bottom served as the passageway for the soul of the dead to travel in the nether world, and it was inferred that the human face design was a totem or an expression of the blessings of the living toward their deceased relatives and the affection of the elder towards their juniors.

History of the Object
Jiangzhai is a large Neolithic village (Yangshao culture). Radiocarbon dates from the site fall between 4790 and 3690 BC, and cover the four phases of the Yangshao culture. The oldest phase (called Banpo) is securely dated between 4790 and 4340 BC. The site includes an area of nearly 50,000 square meters, in a pattern of concentric circles. Outside the ditch are three cemeteries, with pit and urn burials.

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Type
Ceramics 
Materials
Pottery 
Measurements
Width 43 cm. Height 25 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
China 
Geography
China 
Time period
BCE 38th century ~ BCE 37th century 
Creation date
BCE; 48th Century BCE - 37th Century BCE; Neolithic Period (middle) 
Function
This basin is believed to have functioned as the cover of an urn for burying premature infants. 
Acquisition
Excavated in 1974 from the Jiangzhai site. 
Copyright
 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Shaanxi History Museum 
Museum
Shaanxi History Museum 
Credit line
 

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