Eastern Zhou dynasty The large archaistic vessel widely cast, the exterior with bands of keyfret scrolls and downward leaf lappets, all converging towards a covered spout in the form of a mythical beast expelling water from its mouth, the C-shaped chi dragon handle surmounted by a taotie thumb rest, with malachite encrustation. 25cm wide.
Archaic bronze yi vessels were used in conjuction with pan for the ritual washing of hands. It was a late Western Zhou adaptation of the gong or the he, and continued into the Eastern Zhou period.
For a closely related archaic bronze yi, see an example preserved in the Shanghai Museum, illustrated in Zhongguo Qingtongqi Quanji, 6, Xi - 6 - Xi Zhou (2), Beijing, 1997, p. 143, no. 147.
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