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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Fine Asian Porcelain - Antique Ding

A Ding is an ancient Chinese vessel with legs, a lid and two handles opposite each other. They were made in two shapes with round vessels having three legs and rectangular ones four.

Dings were originally made of ceramic materials then later, at the time of the Shang Dynasty (1600-1046 BCE), cast in bronze. This is the period to which the oldest examples of dings date back. Inscriptions found on dings and zhongs are used to study bronzeware script. They were used for cooking, storage and the preparation of ritual offerings to ancestors.

In Chinese history and culture, possession of one or more ancient dings is often associated with power and dominion over the land. Therefore, the ding is often used as an implicit symbolism for power. The term "inquiring of the ding" is often used interchangeably with the quest for power.

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