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HOME : Chinese Art : Tang Dynasty : Tang Sculpture of an Earth Spirit
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Tang Sculpture of an Earth Spirit - H.035
Origin: China
Circa: 618 AD to 907 AD

Collection: Chinese
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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Powerfully modeled as fearsome creatures crouched on muscular legs with hooves, this earth spirit evokes tremendous awe from its intimidating appearance. This figure bears the face of a mythical beast with two curved horns, distended ears, bulging eyes and snarling mouth exposing fangs. The creature is equipped with wings, the torso of a feline, and extraordinary sight and sound. Facing forward, it rests on its hind legs, as its staunch forelegs hold the force of its body in the position of attention. Placed inside the underground burial quarters of upper class men, these objects were designed to protect the physical site, as they were to resume life form in times of danger, and accompany the soul of the deceased along the perilous journey into the other world. These burial objects served an important role in the ancestral belief system of ancient Chinese society, as well as in the illustrious practices of the elite society. - (H.035)


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