A very rare pair of large inlaid bronze square vessels and covers, Fang Hu Early Western Han Dynasty  (4)

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 9
A very rare pair of large inlaid bronze square vessels and covers, Fang Hu
Early Western Han Dynasty

£ 200,000 - 300,000
US$ 240,000 - 360,000
A very rare pair of large inlaid bronze square vessels and covers, Fang Hu
Early Western Han Dynasty
The vessels of square section, each supported on a tall, slightly splayed foot, the shoulders with two relief-cast taotie mask handles suspending loose rings, decorated around the body with copper and malachite-inlaid designs of angular curls and hooks, the cover with canted sides supporting four flat finials shaped as stylised birds at the corners. Each 41cm (16 1/8in) high. (4).

Footnotes

  • The Property of a Gentleman 士紳藏品

    西漢早期 銅嵌松石幾何紋鈁 一對

    Provenance:
    The Wang Family Collection, Taipei, by repute
    Gisèle Croës Arts D'Extreme Orient, Brussels, 1996
    Jean-Yves Ollivier Collection

    Published and Illustrated:
    G.Croës, XVII Biennale des Antiquaires, Paris, 10-24 November 1994, pp.52-55

    來源:據傳為台北王氏家族舊藏
    布魯塞爾古董商吉賽爾藝廊,1996年
    歐宗易先生珍藏

    展覽及出版:
    吉賽爾著,《XVII Biennale des Antiquaires(第十七屆巴黎古董雙年展)》,巴黎,1994年11月10日-24日,頁52-55

    This exceptional pair of large bronze vessels and covers would have served as wine containers. This type of square wine vessel, known as fang (鈁) and decorated with geometric motifs, was popular during the middle to late Warring States period, and was widely found in the Shaanxi and Henan regions.

    Beginning in the Eastern Zhou period, bronze wine vessels such as the present lot changed from being solely solemn ritual objects into luxury products that exhibited their owner's wealth and status. The inlay on this pair of vessels was meticulously executed to form stylised clouds and geometric patterns, demonstrating exceptional craftsmanship and sophisticated, creative designs which reflected the fashion of the time. Underscoring this transition in bronze vessels as moving away from solemn ritual objects to objects of conspicuous consumption, is a hu from the Palace Museum, Beijing, Han dynasty which is cast in relief on its base with a nine-character inscription in seal script reading, 'happiness comes with drinking wine and eating'; see The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Bronze Articles for Daily Use, Hong Kong, 2006, pp.62-63, no.54.

    Inlaid fang hu have been unearthed since the 1930s, most of which date to the middle or late Warring States period. See several examples excavated from Jincun, Luoyang in 1929, illustrated by W.C.White, Tombs of Old Lo-yang, Shanghai, 1934. Compare also with another fang hu with similar design but without a cover, which confirms from its inscription that it was taken by the Qi general Chen Zhang from Yan region (today's Hebei Province) to the Shangdong peninsula in 314 BC, now in the Penn Museum, Philadelphia (acc.no.C243), illustrated by W.Watson, Art of Dynastic China, London, 1981, pl.633.

    A similar pair of fang hu, 600-200 BC, but without covers, is in the British Museum. See also a related bronze fang hu, Western Han dynasty, unearthed in 1964, Nanxiaoxiang, Lianhu, Shaanxi Province, in the Xi'an Museum, illustrated in Age of Empires: Art of the Qin and Han Dynasties, New York, 2017, p.140, no.66.

    鈁,屬於酒器,作儲存酒類之用,自戰國中期至後期始開始盛行於陝西及河南地區。自東周以降,青銅器皿逐漸由祭祀儀式中所用的禮器轉變為生活器具,作為炫耀身份地位及財富的途徑。此對銅鈁器身飾以繁複的幾何紋,鬼斧神工,充分反映戰國時代工匠之精湛技藝以及創新風格。北京故宮博物院所藏一件類似的漢代銅壺,其底部鑄有「樂未央,宜酒食,長久富」九字銘文,作為此一過渡之明證,詳見《故宮博物院藏文物珍品全集:青銅生活器》,香港,2006年,頁62至63,編號54。

    1930年代以降,若干銅鑲嵌鈁自考古發掘中出土,其中大多為戰國中後期器物。1929年於洛陽金村出土數例,載於W.C.White著,《洛陽古城古墓考(Tombs of Old Lo-yang)》,上海,1934年。另一類似銅鈁,由美國費城賓夕凡尼亞大學博物館所藏,紋飾風格與本拍品相近,器足銘文記載此器為齊國將軍陳章(又名匡章)於公元前314年伐燕後,由燕國(今河北)帶返齊國,惜原配銅蓋已經佚失,載於W.Watson著,《Art of Dynastic China(古代中國藝術)》,倫敦,1981年,圖633。

    倫敦大英博物館亦藏有一對相近例子,約為公元前600至200年所鑄,原配銅蓋亦已佚失。而1964年陝西省西安市蓮湖區南小巷曾出土一件相關例子,現由西安博物館所藏,載於《Age of Empires: Art of the Qin and Han Dynasties(帝國時代:秦漢藝術)》,紐約,2017年,頁140,編號66。
Contacts
A very rare pair of large inlaid bronze square vessels and covers, Fang Hu Early Western Han Dynasty  (4)
A very rare pair of large inlaid bronze square vessels and covers, Fang Hu Early Western Han Dynasty  (4)
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories, buyer's premium excluding Cars, Motorbikes, Wine, Whisky and Coin & Medal sales, will be as follows:

Buyer's Premium Rates
27.5% on the first £20,000 of the hammer price;
26% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £20,000 up to and including £700,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £700,000 up to and including £4,500,000;
and 14.5% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of £4,500,000.

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

For payment information please refer to the sale catalogue.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licences please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

App