Exploring Chinese bronzes at 11 Chinese museums

Nanjing Museum, Jiangsu province

Updated: Oct 15, 2021 Print
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A visitor looks at exhibited bronze wares at the Nanjing Museum. [Photo/VCG]

China is one of the world’s ancient civilizations and has the earliest outstanding bronze casting technology. Bronze is an enduring alloy made of copper and other metals such as tin and lead, and is therefore also called "fine metal" (jijin). The emergence of bronze wares marked the origin of Chinese civilization, and exerted a significant and profound influence on China’s social progress. The Xia, Shang, and Zhou dynasties (c.21st century-256 BC) created the most brilliant bronze-based civilization in Chinese history.

The History Gallery of the Nanjing Museum has more than 80 pieces of bronze ware on perennial display, most of which were unearthed by excavation in East China’s Jiangsu province by the museum’s archaeological experts. Compared to the massive and imposing styled bronze wares found in northern China, those from the collection of the Nanjing Museum are smaller and more exquisite.

The Nao Bell (a musical instrument) with an Animal-Mask Motif from the Western Zhou Dynasty (c.11th century-771 BC) is part of the permanent collection of the Nanjing Museum. [Photo/]

Click the link to learn more about the Nanjing Museum

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