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Spending a day with ancient Chinese noble families

( ) 2020-01-02

Spending a day with ancient Chinese noble families

Round balls put at the right side of the table are used in Chuiwan, a ball game best described as a mix of gate ball and golf. [Photo/]

An exhibition featuring a collection of artifacts shedding light on the daily life of noble families during the Song Dynasty (960-1279) was recently launched at the Han Tianheng Art Museum in Jiading, Shanghai.

The exhibits, laid out chronologically, include 350 private collections, such as ink slabs and seals, offering a rare up-close look at the morning, afternoon and evening routines of young noble family members.

Round stones, for example, considered unattractive in appearance, were an important part of Chuiwan, a ball game little known today which can best be described as a mix of gate ball and golf.

An unassuming jade tube only 5 centimeters long has a deceptively rich story behind it – it was crafted from precious raw materials and has a famous poem carved inside.

"The jade belonged to Emperor Zhezong of the Song Dynasty and was worn around his waist," said Han Tianheng, curator of the museum, "The poem inside reflected his political ambitions to implement new laws and regulations."

Zhong Yiwen, a visitor at the exhibition, said he was attracted by the stories behind the artifacts.

"I'm generally not a fan of historical exhibitions since the explanations are often hard to understand, but this exhibition has expanded my horizons, I've never thought about the fact that people during the Song Dynasty also had normal daily routines," Zhong said.

The exhibition will run through June 30 at the museum at No 70 Bole Road between 9am and 5pm from Tuesdays to Sundays.



Jiading Fahua Pagoda

The Fahua Pagoda, 40.8 meters tall, is a square, brick-wood structure with seven stories, accessible by ladders.