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Shang Ritual Bronzes in the Arthur M. Sackler Collections

Bagley, Robert W.

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ISBN 10: 0674805259 / ISBN 13: 9780674805255
Published by Harvard Univ Pr, Cumbreland, Rhode Island, U.S.A., 1987
Condition: NEW / MINT Hardcover
From Penobscot Books (Searsport, ME, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

This is a Multi-Volume set, Complete: (containing Volumes IIA and IIB, and Volume 3) of the 'monumental' study of monumental bronzes of Western Zou ritual bronzes and (Volume 3) Eastern Zhou ritual bronzes. Sold only as set. The definitive work on this subject, and the volumes are beautiful and very heavy. // Each volume is NEW and MINT. // No finer set exists. Size: 11.25 x 14.25 Each. Bookseller Inventory # 001353

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Shang Ritual Bronzes in the Arthur M. ...

Publisher: Harvard Univ Pr, Cumbreland, Rhode Island, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1987

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:NEW / MINT

Dust Jacket Condition: New / Mint

About this title


The bronze ritual vessel, the defining artifact of early Chinese civilization, is the subject of this monumental study of Shang ritual bronzes in the Arthur M. Sackler Collections. A comprehensive introduction, the most thorough treatment of Shang bronzes in any language, lays the foundation for 104 catalogue entries, many of which explore in greater detail specific problems in casting technology, epigraphy, vessel typology, and provincial bronze styles. Color plates of all the Sackler bronzes are supplemented by rubbings, details, and more than 500 comparative illustrations.
Throughout the book the author has made systematic use of the astonishing archaeological discoveries of the last 15 years, discoveries which include major finds of pre-Anyang bronzes and the unprecedented excavation in 1976 of an intact Shang royal tomb. No less revealing, however, are technical studies of Chinese bronzes carried out in the West, including studies of the bronzes catalogued here, for Dr. Bagley shows technical factors to have played a crucial role in the development of the Shang artistic tradition. By giving special attention to the formative stages of the Shang bronze industry, he is able to trace in precise detail the complex interaction of technique and design which led from modest beginnings at Erlitou to the spectacular bronzes of the Anyang period (c.1300-1030 BC). In the spirit of Jean Bony's remark that "each moment has its right to be considered ultimate," pre-Anyang bronzes are treated not as stepping stones to the more familiar bronzes of Anyang times but as objects deserving attention in their own right. Nevertheless Anyang bronzes become at once less familiar and more intelligible when viewed in a developmental perspective, and the strict historical approach taken here calls into question current interpretations of their decoration. Ten years in the making, this book will be of interest not only to students of Chinese archaeology but also to historians of technology, to art historians interested in the process of artistic invention, and to archaeologists concerned with the comparative study of ancient civilizations.

About the Author:

Robert Bagley is now a member of the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University.

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