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Lot 0112A
East Asia, China, Han Dynasty, ca. 206 BCE to 220 CE. An impressive sword, cast in a single piece, with a long, straight blade with a raised, linear ridge down its center. It has a very shallow, short guard. The thin handle would have had leather or some other perishable material wrapped around it to form a grip. At the top is a broad, round pommel, convex to inset a jewel or some other decorative element (we know of examples with turquoise set into the pommel). This type of sword is called a jian, a double-edged straight sword that has been used in China for 2500 years. Size: 1.75" W x 19.9" H (4.4 cm x 50.5 cm)

The late Warring States to Han Dynasty period saw a transition in military styles, from bronze weaponry and chariot-based fighting to iron and cavalry. However, the old period was still revered. Finely made bronze weapons such as this one were signs of prestige, used in ceremonial and funerary weapons. For example, swords were worn by the Emperor and his officials in ceremonial or official dress, attached to the belt with jade ornaments.

Provenance: private Orange County, California, USA collection

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Encrusted patina and excellent form.

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Chinese Han Dynasty Bronze Sword

Estimate $1,200 - $1,500Oct 12, 2017