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Sword with A Horse-Head-Shaped Handle


Late Period of the Shang Dynasty

Length: 32cm

Unearthed from Yantoucun, Suide County, Shaanxi Province in 1965

With a handle in the shape of a horse head, this sword is a gem of a collection of articles for daily use from a minority nationality of the Shang Dynasty, called 'Gui Fang'. This kind of artifact has also been excavated in Qinglong of Hebei Province, Shilou of Shanxi Province and Fuhao's Tomb of Yinxu Ruins at Anyang, Henan Province. Using the head of a snake, horse or sheep as the handle of a kinfe or sword is the decorative feature of this nomadic tirbe from Northern China.