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《Journal of National Museum of China》 2015-04
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A Preliminar y Research on Hand led M irror in Dunhuang Manuscripts

Zhu Di;  
According to previous researches, handled mirrors belong to the Western tradition and are widely found in West and Central Asia and the Mediterranean region; knobbed mirrors belong to the Eastern tradition and are popular in China. In Dunhuang manuscripts, handled mirror is recorded as "鎶鑑" [gejian], referring exclusively to mirrors imported from the West through trade during the Tang dynasty. Archaeological materials show that no later than the early 8th century, handled mirrors were used by the upper society. Dunhuang manuscripts related to debit and credit also give information about the prices: as an everyday object, handled mirrors were affordable to the common people. Soon after their importation, handled mirrors inspired Chinese craftsmen, who imitated using casting techniques and decorations for traditional knobbed mirrors. During the Song dynasty, the most representative high quality bronze handled mirrors were known as "Huzhou mirrors". As a result, handled mirrors imitated by Chinese craftsmen enriched the Eastern mirror tradition and at the same time had a great impact on Chinese traditional bronze mirror manufacturing as well as on neighbouring regions in East Asia. Ever since the Heian period, Huzhou mirrors were exported to Japan in large numbers, including new style handled mirrors, which had a lasting and profound impact on Japanese mirror manufacturing.
【CateGory Index】: K875.2
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