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Emblems, seals and writing in Early China


Prof. Dr. Olivier Venture (École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris)

Datum und Zeit

23. September 2019, 18:00 - 20:00 Uhr


Asien-Orient-Institut, Raum ZUB 416, Zürichbergstrasse 4, 8032 Zürich


Emblems found on bronzens from the Shang (ca. 1600 - 1050 BCE) and the Zhou (ca. 1050 - 256 BCE) dynasties, at the end of the second millenium BCE, present some strong pictographic characteristics which often lead scholars to consider these ancient signs as potential ancestors of Chinese writing. In this presentation, I would like to propose a reflection about the relationships between writing and emblems in Early China, relying mainly on archaelogical and epigraphical evidence. Particula attention will be paid to the use of emblems under the Shang and the Zhou and to its evolution. Trying to shed a different light on this complex question, I would also like to share some considerations about seals in Early China, and their links with writing and emblems.


Asien-Orient-Institut - Sinologie

Weiterführende Informationen


Prof. Dr. Olivier Venture: Emblems, seals and writing in Early China