Mirror with Animals and Grapes

Place of production
Era century
Tang Period
Diameter 17.4 cm Rim height 1.5 cm
Kyoto National Museum
Mirrors decorated with marine animals and grapes constitute the majority of extant mirrors from the Sui (518-618) and Tang (618-907) dynasties. Typically, the rim inclines slightly inward and design on the back is divided into inner and outer bands filled with animal and grape motifs by an inner border. In early examples, the motifs are sharply divided into two zones by the inner border. But on mirrors made starting around the late 7th century, as in this piece, motifs that transcend this boundary, such as grapes that appear to climb up above the inner border into the outer zone, begin to be more common.

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