Xiao Chenshan Zhi


Drinking vessel
King Cheng's Reign of Western Zhou Dynasty
Height:13.8cm

It is a flat ellipsoid. An inscription on the inner bottom of the vessel reveals the owner is Xiao Chenshan.

It was recorded that King Wu of Zhou toppled the Shang Dynasty and founded the Zhou Dynasty. To appease Shang's remaining forces, he made Yin (in Henan Province) a manor for Wu Geng, who was also named Lu Fu and was the son of the last Shang Dynasty king. He designated three of his brothers, Guan Shu, Cai Shu, and Huo Shu, to be governors of the place to keep watch on Wu Geng. After King Wu died, the Duke of Zhou became the regent. Guan Shu and Cai Shu felt that the Duke of Zhou had his own ambition on the throne. Wu Geng didn't waste this chance to conspire against the Zhou Dynasty with them. The insurgency spread throughout the eastern and southern regions of the Zhou Dynasty and the new-born regime was in great danger. The Duke of Zhou suppressed the rebellion and won a complete victory within three years. This war was critical for the consolidation of the newly established Western Zhou Dynasty.

The 4-line, 22-character inscriptions say that Xiao Chenshan fought in the war. When the troops were quartered at Chen Zhou, the Duke of Zhou rewarded him with ten bunches of cowries( the currency of the time) for his military exploits. This Zhi was cast in honor of the event.