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Musician on Horseback

Mid- 7th century
Artist/maker unknown, Chinese
Pottery figures of musicians on horseback, both male and female, were interred with the deceased in China as early as the fourth century. They have been found in varying numbers in Tang dynasty tombs of wealthy officials and usually include a drummer. This figure, playing a vertical flute, belongs to a set of five mounted musicians wearing long-sleeved tunics, boots, and a distinctive fengmao, a hat that protects the ears and neck from wind. Mounted musicians served in the army to signal battle orders, and they may also have accompanied funeral processions. The ceramic figures were made in molds, so they tend to be similar in form. They are often differentiated by being glazed or decorated with pigments (only an orange-red pigment remains on these examples). 

Object Details

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