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alttitle 弘义

Tile End Mold with Taotie Design
Pottery Designs from the State of Yan in the Warring States Period 战国燕

The Taotie motif is very common in both pottery and bronze work. There are different local variations on the mythology to accompany the Taotie, but basically it is enormously strong and protective monster that guards against evil spirits. It has infinite variations. It is a very abstract design and uses mirroring to make the elements appear zoomorphic. Facial features such as the eyes, eyebrows, nose and mouth are embedded in geometric and curved designs. Strong angular lines are used to make the Taotie fierce. The eyebrows dip down toward the center in rage. It's like having a pitbull to protect your property.

China Index >> Historical Beijing in Pictures >> Neolithic and Early Dynasty Pottery and Roof Tiles

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Last update: September 2013
© Marilyn Shea, 2013