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Blade (ko)


Unknown Artist

  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Zhou dynasty circa 1100 - 256 BCE → China
    Media category
    Materials used
    25.7 x 10.0 x 1.0 cm
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Gift of Josef and Regina Neumann 1988
    Not on display
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

  • About

    The Zhou were Western neighbours of the Shang and conquered them in 1027 BC. The Zhou maintained many Shang practices, although they did introduce feudalism to reward the many who had served them in their victory. Warfare was a fact of life in ancient China as evident by the large quantities of weapons that have been excavated.

    The 'ko' dagger axe is the characteristic weapon of Shang and Zhou. It developed out of earlier stone prototypes. Some of the stone weapons and artefacts used in prehistoric China were common to all neolithic peoples of Asia, but others, like the 'ko' were of purely Chinese origin. The 'ko' also had ritual significance as demonstrated by Shang specimens with jade blades.

    Jackie Menzies, 'Early Chinese Art', AGNSW, 1983. cat.no. IV (b).

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

    • Early Chinese art, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 26 Feb 1983–08 May 1983

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 1 publication

    • Jackie Menzies, Early Chinese Art, Sydney, 1983, not paginated. cat.no. IV See 'Further Information' for text.