Mirror with Dragon Arabesques

A work made of bronze.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of bronze.

Date:

Eastern Zhou dynasty, Warring States period or early Western Han dynasty, 3rd/2nd century B.C.

Artist:

China

About this artwork

The mirror in ancient China, usually held by hand with a cord, was a thin bronze disk with one face polished to a reflective sheen. The backs of mirrors were cast with elegant and dynamic designs that often reflect then-contemporary textile designs. The ground of interlocking T's on this mirror is known from textile finds as well as from impressions of deteriorated fabrics preserved in the surface corrosion of bronzes. Superimposed on, and contrasting with, this rectangular ground are flowing dragon- and bird-headed figures reminiscent of those seen in embroidered designs. The interplay of lines and curves is characteristic of the decorative art of the third and second centuries B.C.

On View

Asian Art, Gallery 132

Title

Mirror with Dragon Arabesques

Origin

China

Date

299 BC–100 BC

Medium

Bronze

Dimensions

Diam. 20.8 cm (8 3/8 in.); Thickness: 0.2 cm (3/16 in.)

Credit Line

Samuel M. Nickerson Fund

Reference Number

1932.46

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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