Tripod incense burner


Qing dynasty (1644–1911), Qianlong period (1736–95)

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 220

Ancient ritual bronzes often served as prototypes for later metalwork, particularly those with ritual or ceremonial functions. The shape of this piece is based on an archaic tripod vessel known as a ding, which was used for holding or serving food and other offerings; however, this object functioned as an incense burner. The six-character mark on the raised gilt-bronze plaque identifies that it was from the imperial workshop in Beijing.

Tripod incense burner, Cloisonné enamel, gilt bronze, China

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