Aug 30, 2012
Aug 30, 2012

Wine vessel (Jue)

Wine vessel (Jue)

c. 1200 BC

China, late Shang dynasty

(c.1600-c.1046 BC)


Overall: 22.7 x 17.2 cm (8 15/16 x 6 3/4 in.)

Cornelia Blakemore Warner Fund and Edward L. Wittemore Fund 1960.42


Wine and food played a major role in ritual offerings to the ancestral spirits and the Supreme Ancestor (Shangdi) performed by the Shang rulers in the state cult of ancestor worship. A variety of wine vessels—each type given a specific name—was cast to bear witness to the power and artistic vitality of this remote civilization. This example of a jue wine cup is for libations. Other types of wine vessels include jia (wine warming vessel), fangyou (square wine container), and gu (beaker with a trumpeted mouth for pouring).

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