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Chariot-shaped Bronze Cassette   
  Western Zhou Dynasty (1046B.C.-771 B.C.)

This small and exquisite bronze cassette, made in Western Zhou Dynasty, may be an appliance used to contain valuable things by aristocrats in Jin State. And up to now only few pieces of such cassette have found in Quwo and Wenxi in Shanxi province. Four wheels are fixed to the bottom of the bronze cassette, making it in a chariot shape. The four edges of its body are decorated with a kui dragon with its head turning around. As for the walls, they are decorated with the wavestrip pattern and at each flank of the box there is a loop used to pull along. Looking at the lid, each corner stands a head-raised and wings-spread bird which can be rotated arbitrarily and flexibly and there are two doors in the middle that can be opened and closed by the two handles of which one is in the shape of a squatting man and the other of a sitting ape.
Despite its small size, the bronze cassette is of great ingenuity with unique shape and novel design. The especially intellegent degin is that all the four birds on the lid, the four wheels at the bottom and the two doors can be turned around freely.

 


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