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The function and appearance of bronzes altered gradually from the Shang to the Zhou, and they began to be used for practical purposes as well as in religious rites.By the Warring States Period (fifth century ), bronze vessels had become objects of aesthetic enjoyment.

The songs in this collection are more lyrical and romantic and represent a different tradition from the earlier Classic of Poetry (Shi Jing).

A rich source of art in early China was the state of Chu (722 – 481 ), which developed in the Yangtze River valley.

Some were decorated with scenes of social life, such as banquets or hunts; while others displayed abstract patterns inlaid with gold, silver, or precious and semiprecious stones.

), when they were collected and prized not only for their shape and design but also for the various green, blue green, and even reddish patinas created by chemical action as they lay buried in the ground.

The world's oldest painting on silk discovered to date was found at a site in Changsha, Hunan province.

It shows a woman accompanied by a phoenix and a dragon, two mythological animals that feature prominently in Chinese art.

According to archaeologists, Yangshao society was based around matriarchal clans.

Excavations have found that children were buried in painted pottery jars.

The jade from this culture is characterized by finely worked, large ritual jades such as Cong cylinders, Bi discs, Yue axes, pendants and decorations in the form of chiseled open-work plaques, plates and representations of small birds, turtles and fish.

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