The Ancient Times Of China Essay

1038 Words Nov 30th, 2014 5 Pages
In the ancient times of China, most people intentionally applied the symbolic meanings of good fortune in artworks and utensils to demonstrate their statuses and wealth. They not only integrated these symbols in quotidian lives, but also deeply into their cultures and art. This trend was especially common in rich and influential people for they were more superstitious and concerned of their social ranks. Gourds and peonies in particular, represent auspiciousness and wealth in Chinese cultures. In Shanghai Museum’s exhibition, bottle-gourds and peonies appeared repetitively in numerous artworks across dynasties which demonstrated their incomparable importance to Chinese civilization. Because of their propitious significances, there were also widely used by the emperors and empresses. While gourd and peony are mostly viewed as simple objects in other cultures, their appeal crosses ages and cultures in Chinese civilization as they use abstract elements of symbolisms to provoke popular demands. Despite gourds are interpreted differently in Western cultures, they generally represent auspiciousness, longevity, and wellness in Chinese context. In the bible, the gourd is considered as the beginning, the symbol of Resurrection, or “the antidote for the apple” (Wilson, 162) as illustrated in Floris Franceso’s painting “The Fall.” In native American culture, “among the Aztecs, Mayans, and ancient Peruvians … [the gourd] was considered the strongest symbol of water, the source and…

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