Bell from the Dông Son culture

Dông Son culture, 3rd century BC – 1st century AD
H. 7 cm or 2 ⅞ in

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This charming little bell is a testimony to the great production of bronze objects in the Dong Son culture.

Identified in 1924, the Dông Son culture was named after a site on the banks of the Red River where its first traces were discovered at least 600 years BCE. Highly sophisticated bronze casting skills were developed, mostly for the creation of drums, recipients, arms and ornaments. People of the Dông Son culture placed great importance in rites and ceremonies, and most burial objects had both a practical function and a ritualistic symbolism. Clear proof of cultural and economic exchanges, Dông Son art not only influenced the Chinese provinces on which it bordered, but also a wide geographic zone that included Cambodia, Thailand and Indonesia up to the eastern Sunda Islands. This Dông Son culture progressively morphed into Vietnamese art with Chinese tendencies, called Giao-Chi (or Han-Viet) as of the 1st century A.D.

Provenance: Private collection, Belgium.

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