12m 40s

Ritual Bell with Crossed Band Design (Dotaku)

The Magic of Japanese Masterpieces

Broadcast on April 16, 2015 Available until March 31, 2029

The dotaku bronze bells made in Japan from the 2nd century BC to the 3rd century AD are believed to have had ritual uses. This Ritual Bell with a Crossed Band Design was probably made in the 2nd or 1st century BC. The line drawings on its face include pictures of a dragonfly, soft-shelled turtle and hunting wild boar with dogs. The scenes of two people using a mortar and pestle and a high-floored building hold particular value for the indication they provide about people’s lifestyle in the era when paddy farming arrived in ancient Japan. Both the bronze from which it was made and the manufacturing technique came to Japanese archipelago from abroad; from China or the Korean peninsula. The Dotaku bronze bells show how the inhabitants of ancient Japan of that era acquired these foreign skills and adapted them in their own distinctive ways.


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