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Creator Name: Unknown
Creator Nationality: Asian; Far East Asian; Chinese
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Name-CRT: Artist unknown
Title: Ch'in
View: front
Creation Start Date: 1634
Creation End Date: 1634
Creation Date: 1634
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Materials and Techniques: lacquered wood with jade thumb screws
Dimensions: H.47 x W.7 x D.3-1/2 in.
Inscriptions: INSCRIPTIONS
AMICA Contributor: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Owner Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
ID Number: 96.121
Credit Line: Gift of Ruth and Bruce Dayton

The lute, or ch'in, has been regarded as a symbol of enlightenment by the Chinese since Confucian times (6th century b.c.). By the 17th century, it was a required object in most scholar's studies. This exceptionally rare lute has inscriptions on its bottom, including the title Chung Ho ("middle harmony") and the number 57. One of a series made in 1634 for Prince Lu, a son of the Wan-li emperor, it was probably given as a gift to a friend or member of his aristocratic literary circle. The instrument also bears the gilded mark Lu-kuo shih ch'uan ("heirloom of the Lu State") and an engraved poem, signed by Ching-i chu-jen, that reads:

The moonlight is reflected in the Yangtze;

A light breeze blows over clear dew drops.

Only in a tranquil place

Can one comprehend the feeling of eternity.

AMICA ID: MIA_.96.121
Component Measured: overall
Measurement Unit: in
AMICA Library Year: 1999
Media Metadata Rights: ?The Minneapolis Institute of Arts

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