Exhibitions/ Art Object
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清 鄧石如 隷書 對聯 絹本
Couplet

Calligrapher:
Deng Shiru (Chinese, 1743–1805)
Period:
Qing dynasty (1644–1911)
Date:
1804
Culture:
China
Medium:
Two hanging scrolls; ink on colored silk
Dimensions:
Image (each scroll): 50 3/8 × 10 7/8 in. (128 × 27.6 cm) Overall with mounting (each scroll): 66 3/4 × 13 1/2 in. (169.5 × 34.3 cm)
Classification:
Calligraphy
Credit Line:
Promised Gift of Guanyuan Shanzhuang Collection
Not on view
清 鄧石如 隷書 對聯 絹本

The blocky script type you see here is called clerical script, which evolved as a more efficient alternative to seal script. In clerical script, the complicated structures and twisting lines of seal script are simplified to more manageable forms, written with lines of varying thickness that allow the calligrapher to move the brush more quickly. These changes incidentally meant that calligraphers could inject more individuality into their writing. Though clerical script fell out of common use by the third century, it was revived in the eighteenth century, when scholars like Deng Shiru began to look to the distant past for inspiration.

Poets exchange verses, seeking lasting celebration.
Even as the flowers wither, ewers and wine goblets extend eternal harmony.

吟壇贈答追長慶
華謝壺觴繼永和