Henan Museum
Lady Mengteng’s Bathing Jar
Edit: Acf
Time: 2023-09-18 16:53:27
Period: Spring and Autumn period (770-476 B.C.)
Provenance: No.1 Chunqiu tomb at Xiasi of Xichuan in 1978
Measurements: H.38.7 cm
Mouth diameter: 23 cm

Of a tubular form, with a dome cover, contracted mouth, flat bottom, two semicircular handles with animal head decorations on opposing sides of the vessel. The cover and body were both adorned with two bands of cord designs, between which are filled with coiled serpent designs. An inscription of 22 characters in three lines stated the name of the person who commissioned the vessel and the function of the vessel. A semi-circle of inscription, with the same contents as that of the cover, was cast at the mouth rim. The vessel features a sturdy and stately shape, visible and graceful decorations, exquisite and elaborate craftsmanship.

The present vessel, Fou, was archaeologically discovered at No.1 tomb at Xiasi of Xichuan county, the tomb occupant was identified to be Lady Mengteng, i.e. wife of Wei Zipeng. Bronze bathing pots, as a water container in most cases, originated in the Eastern Zhou period, taking an important place in the assemblage of the Chu state bronze wares, and were generally found in the magnificent tombs of the aristocrats, they are precious physical reference for studying the history and culture of the Chu state during the Spring and Autumn period.