Exhibitions/ Art Object

东汉 青铜摇钱树
Money Tree

Eastern Han dynasty (25–220)
2nd century
Overall H. 59 13/16 in. (152 cm) Base (base): H. 18 1/8 in. (46 cm); W. 9 7/16 in. (24 cm); L. 10 1/4 in. (26 cm)
Credit Line:
Lent by Guanghan Municipal Institute of Cultural Relics
Not on view
This object represents a type of funerary good called a “money tree” (qian shu) or “money-shaking tree” (yao qian shu). In the extant texts, the term “money tree” first appeared in the eighth century A.D. It is, however, unclear if there was any connection between early discoveries and later records. Based on about two hundred examples known to us, the use of money trees in Han China was prevalent in the southwest and was popular from the first to third century A.D.
#218. Money tree
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Excavated from Shixiangcun, Wanfuxiang, Guanghan city, Sichuan, 1983 (1983 年四川省广汉市万福镇出土)

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Age of Empires: Chinese Art of the Qin and Han Dynasties (221 B.C.–A.D. 200)," April 3, 2017–July 16, 2017.

Qiu Dengcheng 邱登成. Xinan diqu handai yaoqianshu yanjiu 西南地區漢代搖錢樹研究 Chengdu: Bashu Shushe Press, 2011.

He Zhiguo 何志國. Han Wei yaoqianshu chubu yanjiu 汉魏摇钱树初步研究 (A preliminary study of money tree of the Han to Wei period). Beijing: Kexue Chubanshe 2007, 31–32.