Dancer and Musicians

Period: Han dynasty (206 B.C.–A.D. 220)

Date: 1st century B.C.–1st century A.D.

Culture: China

Medium: Earthenware with pigment

Dimensions: (a) dancer: H. 5 1/4 in. (13.3 cm); W. 5 1/4 in. (13.3 cm); D. 2 1/4 in. (5.7 cm)
(c) musician: H. 5 3/8 in. (13.7 cm); W. 4 1/4 in. (10.8 cm); W. 4 3/8 in. (11.1 cm)

Classification: Tomb Pottery

Credit Line: Charlotte C. and John C. Weber Collection, Gift of Charlotte C. and John C. Weber, 1994

Accession Number: 1994.605.85a–c


Pottery figures of entertainers often accompanied the deceased in the afterlife. Here, a female dancer performs the popular “seven dish dance,” tapping dishes with her feet as musicians play a zither and clap. One dish, the only surviving example of the original set of seven, rests under the dancer’s left foot.