Tomb figure of a horse, Northern China

Tomb figure of a horse, Northern China

Tomb figure of a horse
Northern China
Tang dynasty, 700-800
Earthenware, moulded in sections and assembled, details finished by hand, splashed with coloured (sancai) lead glazes.
Museum no. C.50-1964
Mrs Robert Solomon Gift

Large ceramic horses were placed in tombs from the time of the first emperor of united China, Qin Shihuangdi (died 210 BC). By the Tang period, the horses were shown with their saddle and trappings in place, ready for mounting.

The brown glaze running down the neck may relate to the 'blood-sweating' horses imported from the Ferghana valley, now in Uzbekistan.