Yi of Marquis of Qi

Late Western Zhou Dynasty
Height: 24.7cm
Length: 48.1cm
Weight: 6,420g

Yi, a kind of water vessel, appeared after the middle Western Zhou Dynasty. Like a split gourd, this Yi's body is a half ellipsoid, with a broad spout in the front and a dragon-shaped handle at the back. Four crouching legs, with animal mask designs, support the whole vessel. The bottom of belly is inscribed with 22 characters in 4 lines, which tells that Marquis of Qi cast this Yi for his wife Mengji Liangnii, the princess of the State of Guo. In ancient China, intermarriages among royal house members of different states to form alliances were common.