An ongoing exhibition including more than 180 pieces of treasures is being held in Guangzhou Museum to commemorate the 80th anniversary of its founding. The exhibition commenced on May 16 and will last for four months, and is expected to be the biggest cultural relics exhibition of Guangzhou Museum in recent years.
Of these treasures, most are first-class or second -class cultural relics involving bronze wares, blue and white porcelain of the Tang and Song Dynasties, porcelain plate with cockfighting pattern presented by Sweden, armor awarded by Emperor Guangxu (1875-1908) and personal letters of Kang Youwei, Li Hongzhang, Zhang Zhidong as well as precious paintings and calligraphies.
Blue and White Porcelain Plate with Cockfighting Pattern
The highlight of this exhibition is porcelain from the Tang and Song Dynasties, especially the celadon porcelains from Yue Kiln of Zhejiang, celadon glazed porcelain from Longquan Kiln, black glazed porcelain from Jizhou Kiln of Jiangxi province and shiny red glazed porcelain of the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1368-1911), which will be a feast for the visitors' eyes.
Among such porcelain, the Blue and White Porcelain Plate with Cockfighting Pattern is perhaps the most attractive one that you shouldn't miss.
Made in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), the Blue and White Porcelain Plate with Cockfighting Pattern bears witness to the longstanding and good relations between China and Sweden. In 1745, the Swedish ship Gotheborg arrived in Guangzhou and purchased lots of porcelain from China, but unfortunately, the ship sank on its return voyage. 160 years later, it was salvaged from the sea and this blue and white plate was still in good shape when it was found. It was presented to China by the Swedish king in 1996 when he sailed with the imitation ship Gotheborg III paying a friendly visit to Guangzhou.
Armor awarded by Emperor Guangxu
This gold-plated armor was awarded to the prefect Deng Huaxi by the Emperor Guangxu, which was composed of 18 parts including jacket, lower hem, protecting cap, round-shaped breast protector and shoulder protector, weighing 40kg. According to records, the armor was too heavy when it was put on and the 60-year-old general couldn't leap onto the horse without the help of soldiers.
The armor has been treasured in a storeroom since 1956 for its texture is vulnerable to humidity, even slightly lifting will make its fibers drop off. With a three-month-long restoration work, the armor is in good condition now.
Personal letters of modern celebrities
Personal letters of modern celebrities is another special collection in Guangzhou Museum, which has never been opened to the public before. Letters are from the celebrities of Emperor Guangxu's reign in the Qing Dynasty as well as the Republic of China (1912-1949), mainly written by cursive calligraphy with the contents involving politics, economy, culture and social life of that time. Letters by Li Hongzhang, Kang Youwei, Zhang Zhidong and Chen Baochen provide precious information for the further study of China's modern history.
King Yue's sword
Ranked as the fist class cultural relics, King Yue's sword was made in the early Warring States (475-221BC), with the engraved Chinese characters "Wang Yue" (means "a battle-axe of the king) on its body. Having experienced 2000 years, its blade is still very sharp and can easily cut things off.
(Chinaculture.org July 16, 2009)