Cultural Tokens in Daily Life
The Four Treasures of the Study
Development: 1) In Spring and Autumn Period, the earliest writing brushes were found;
2) During the Warring States Period, writing brushes were very popular;
3) In Qin Dynasty, Meng Tian, a famous general, used wood as the handle or shaft, deer’s hair as the inner head and goat’s hair as the outer head to make writing brush, with advanced craftsmanship;
4) During the Wei and Jin periods, the famous writing brush was made of brownish rabbit’s hair in Xuancheng, Anhui Province;
5) During the Tang Dynasty, it had a long and therefore soft head; 6) Beginning from the Yuan Dynasty, it was made of goat’s hair, hare;s hair or yellow weasel’s hair in Huzhou, Zhengjiang Province;( sharp, neat, round, tough.)
Head: rabbit’s hair, goat’s hair, horse’s hair, deer’s hair, wolf’s hair, fox’s hair, pig’s hair, goose feather, beard, fetal hair, couchgrass; Handle: water bamboo, spotted bamboo, narra, sandalwood, nanmu, ivory, lacquer, rhinoceros horn, hawksbill, jade, crystal, glass, gold, silver, porcelain, etc.
1. Types of ink-stick: pine-soot ink: pitch dark, but lack luster; lampblack ink: fine, smooth texture, hard and shining.
2.Development: 1) Traces of ink can be found in Shang and Zhou dynasties; 2) During the Han Dynasty, artificial (pine-soot) was made; the standard ink mould; 3) During the Three Kingdoms, Wei Dan, a general of Wei, was good at making ink, which is not only exquisite, but also of high quality; 4) During the Tang Dynasty, huimo became more and more popular in Huizhou, Anhui Province; 5) During the Song Dynasty, lampblack ink was made on the basis of pine-soot ink; 6) In Ming and Qing dynasties, the ink-making industry was fairly developed, Shape: square, rectangular, round oval, irregular.
Outward appearance: natural color, lacquer-coated, golden, lacquer-trimmed.
Paper (one of the four great inventions in ancient China)
Development: 1) In the Western Han Dynasty, the paper which was made of hemp was found; 2) In the Eastern Han Dynasty, Cai Lun improved the papermaking method by using fibers available; 3) In the Tang Dynasty, papermaking was highly developed, Xuan paper in Xuanzhou, Anhui Province, thin and smooth paper in Linchuan, Jiangxi Province, luhe paper in Yangzhou, bamboo tablets and textiles in Guangzhou. 4) After the Ming and the Qing dynasties, papermaking became more develped, strong white xuan paper,rib paper, clothe paper in Yuxian County, tissue paper in Laiyang.
Xuan paper in Xuanzhou, Anhui Province: (characteristics) pliable, strong texture, fine, beautiful grain, apt to express the thickness or lightness of the ink— “paper of Longevity” (categories:) unprocessed xuan paper—good for both calligraphy and painting. processed xuan paper—good for paintings with exact delineation and enriched colors.
Four major types
duan yan, the king of ink-slabs, made in Duanxi,in the east of Duanzhou(Zhaoqing), Guangzhou Province; fine stone texture, and toughness, very smooth, there is hardly any sound when an in-stick is being ground in it; she yan, made in Huizhou, Shexian County,Anhui Province; jade-like texture and oil-like ink, no sound is heard when an ink-stick is being ground in it; tao yan(taohe yan), made in Gansu Provinc, the stones used for the ink-slabs come from the riverbed of the deep Taohe River; chengni yan, made in Jiangzhou, Shanxi, is not made of stone; the lacal people put bags of sand down to the Fenhe River, and used the fine sand to make ink-slabs after getting the bags out a year later.
Lu yan—Weifang and Zibo , Shangdong Province; Pangu yan—Henan Province;
Luowen yan—Jiangxi Province
Duilian or Chinese Couplets
Ying lian(pillar couplets) or duizi (antithetical couplets) Tao fu: peach wood charms against evil, hung on the gate on the Lunar New Year's Eve in ancient times 1.The classification of Chinese Couplets
Spring Festival couplets（春联）, Wedding couplets（喜联）, Longevity couplets（寿联）, Elegiac couplets（挽联）, Decorative couplets（装饰联）, Trade couplets（行业联）, Social couplets（交际联）, Miscellaneous couplets（杂联） (facetious or humorous couplets)
2. What are the features of Chinese couplets?
1) each line having an equal number of characters, and the same sense groups; 2) strictly adhering to the tonal patters; 3) characters of the same part of speech having to be used, and in the same position; 4) the interconnection of the contents; 5) a tradition to write couplets vertically; the first line should always be on the right and the second on the left; a horizontal scroll is necessary to summarize
有道 江 下 真崖 北 联 意疆 通 ： ，。 巫 诸 问潴 峡 君 谁者 ， 试 领， 巴 看 会流 陵 ： 得者 山 洞 来， 西 庭 ？峙 来 湖 者爽南 ，气极 镇，潇 者岳湘 ，阳， 此城扬 中东子
古必 两 上 人醉 字 联 ，。 关 一 使诗 情 楼 我耶 ， 何 怆？ 滕 奇 然儒 子 泪耶 京 杜 下？ 百 少 ！吏 废 陵 耶俱五 ？兴言 仙，绝 耶吕句 ？纯， 前阳范 不散希 见过文 : ?
上 联 ： 今 时 进 士 尽 是 近 视
古时故事固是古事 旧时酒肆就是酒市 七世棋士歧视骑士
文房四宝/ 文化代码/ 笔墨纸砚/ 羊毫、兔毫、狼毫/ 松烟墨、油烟墨/ 生宣、熟宣/ 磨墨/ 对联/ 横批/ 篆 刻/ 碑刻/ 御玺/ 印泥/ 引人注目的成就/ 刀法、篆法、 章法/开山鼻主