are the military preparedness of the state.
If heaven takes this preparedness away,
the state will be imperiled.
an Official History of the Tang
The great influence of the horse throughout the
history of China cannot be
In fact, the expansion of the Chinese
Empire was in large part due to the
rapid mobility of horses, providing quick
communication between far away
Likewise, the military
role of horses aided in the conquest and
submission of distant lands.
The need to import stronger, faster
steeds from Central Asia (as opposed
to the native Mongol pony) led to the
establishment of the Silk Road.
The importance of the horse can be
seen, in part, through the artistic
legacy of this great civilization. In
sculpture, painting, and literature, horses were
glorified and revered, thought
to be relatives of mythological dragons. During
the Tang Dynasty, the adoration of the horse
was materialized in their burial
span>Horse models excavated from
mausoleums of the period are among the most
splendid and easily recognizable
works of Chinese art. This elegant
horse is a perfect example of the mastery of
Tang funerary art.
Coated in a simplistic yet stunning
crème/white glaze, with touches of
amber highlighting the saddle, head and hooves,
this horse stands on all fours
with its head slightly turned and mouth ajar, two
features highly desired by
collectors. The refined molding of this
sculpture captures the power and
grace of this majestic creature. This
elegant sculpture attests to both the revered
status of the horse as well as the
artistic skills of Tang artists.