The Bronze Ceremonial Vessels of Xiaoheishigou Stone Cist Tomb 8501 seen through Comparison with the Chinese Zhongyuan Region

중국 중원 지역과의 비교를 통하여 본 소흑석구 8501호 석곽묘의 청동예기

  • Received : 2014.04.07
  • Accepted : 2014.08.08
  • Published : 2014.09.30


The large stone cist tomb 8501 of Lingcheng prefecture Xiaoheishigou, according to Chinese chronology, was built during the late Western Zhou period. However in this tomb not only Chinese Zhongyuan style bronze ceremonial vessels but also indigenous style bronze ceremonial vessels and instruments and hybrid bronze ceremonial vessels with a mixture of both indigenous and Chinese styles were excavated in large numbers. The bronze ceremonial vessel assemblage of Xiaoheishigou, in comparison with the decorum regulations and bronze cauldron and coffer system of the Chinese Zhongyuan region of the same time period, belong to that of the lowest status category. However, in contrast to the lowest class category tombs of the Chinese Zhongyuan region, in this tomb, with the exception of cauldrons and coffers, the remaining food and wine vessels of the assemblage match the standard of emperors and feudal rulers of vassal states. This is reinforced by the burial of musical instruments. Of the bronze ceremonial vessels of Xiaoheishigou large stone cist tomb 8501, the indigenous and hybrid styles, in consideration of manufacture technology seem to have been manufactured locally. However, the form, pattern and also the standards of the Western Zhou style bronze ceremonial vessels are identical to those of the Chinese Zhongyuan region and therefore it is clear that they were manufactured in Western Zhou. The reason for these precious ceremonial vessels which were manufactured and used in the many individual vassal states of the Chinese Zhongyuan region being buried in Xiaoheishigou, seems to have been the result of economic exchange and friendly political relations between the Xiaoheishigou and other groups rather than these vessels having been plundered by the Xiaoheishigou group. A distinct cultural sphere existed between the Upper Xiajiadian culture and Western Zhou which interacted frequently with both sides.