Ample evidence survives from Shang Dynasty tombs to confirm that small sculptures of animals made of jade or hardstone were treasured possessions of the elite. In addition, larger seated animals, including a tiger and an owl, which were carved from stone for use as wooden frame supports for musical chime sets, have been recovered from Tomb 1001 at Houjiazhuang, the Shang royal cemetery site at Anyang, Henan Province. Nevertheless, judging from surviving evidence, large scale sculpture in clay and stone does not appear to have begun in China until the Qin and Western Han Dynasties respectively. It is possible that two-dimensional images of unicorn zhi were painted on courtyard walls or on silk banners hung near the entrances to official government buildings during the later Bronze Age in China, for there are literary descriptions of palace wall paintings by at least the Warring States period. This ancient mural painting tradition is confirmed by Wang Chong when he says, “In the court-yards of public buildings, Gao Yao’s xiezhi is painted” (emphasis added).
Bronze Age - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Professor Flad's research is currently focused on the emergence and development of complex society during the late Neolithic period and the Bronze Age in China. This research incorporates interests in diachronic change in production processes, the intersection between ritual activity and production, the role of animals in early Chinese society - particularly their use in sacrifice and divination, and the processes involved in social change in general.
Chinese bronze history-- THE GREAT BRONZE AGE OF CHINA
The Bronze Age in China began in the 21st century BC and lasted about 2000 years through the Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties. Bronze wares, as precious metal wares, were mainly used for ceremonial purposes by the upper class in ancient China. The variety and quantity of the bronzes that were used were a reflection of the owner's social status and power. They were cast in a great variety of sophisticated shapes, mythical animals, natural objects and beautiful designs. Bronze wares have been found in the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River and Yangtze Rivers and some remote border areas. Bronze technology is one of the most important achievements of Chinese civilization.
Bronze Age - Ancient History, Civilizations - World Map