Cao, Qin (2018) Ritual or lethal? Bronze weapons in late Shang China. In: Prehistoric Warfare and Violence: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches. Quantitative Methods in the Humanities and Social Sciences . Springer, Cham, London, pp. 225-245. ISBN 9783319788272

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Large-scale bronze production is one of the most salient features of late Shang China (c.1200–1050 BC). Copper-alloy weapons were cast in extraordinary quantities and varieties as shown by the rich burial assemblages known from the period. However, their practical usages are not yet well-understood, and scholars speculate whether the weapons were functional implements or symbolic/prestige items. The chapter discusses the first wear analysis ever undertaken on Chinese Shang weaponry. The analysis has revealed a number of marks, which shed light on the manufacturing process, use, deposition and post-recovery alterations of the weapons. It has also challenged traditional typological classification of Shang weapons and argues for a holistic approach to weapon studies in Chinese archaeology.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: Late Shang China, Bronze weapons, Functional, Wear analysis
Subjects: A General Works > AM Museums (General). Collectors and collecting (General)
D History General and Old World > DS Asia
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
U Military Science > U Military Science (General)
Theme: Material culture: creation and use
Department: World Cultures
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Ross Anderson
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2018 13:59
Last Modified: 02 Aug 2018 13:59

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