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date: 19 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

In early China there was no widespread tradition of making figurines until about the mid-first millennium bc when human figurines started to be placed in burials to accompany the deceased into the afterlife. In prior millennia only pockets of China had seen the emergence of figurines, but these appeared to be short-lived phenomena clearly rooted and linked to local and regional cultures. The overall paucity of three-dimensional imagery and relative rarity of human representations both in two and three dimensions meant that China does not feature in surveys of early figurines. This chapter surveys and discusses selected appearance of figurines of the Neolithic and Bronze Age, with an emphasis on the Hongshan Culture in the northeast, the Yellow River and the Shijiahe Culture along the middle Yangtze.

Keywords: China, Neolithic, Bronze Age, Hongshan Culture, Yellow River, Shijiahe Culture

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