Bronze vessels were commonly used till the Shang and Thou dynasties by aristocrats in daily life and ancestral rituals. It was also the material symbol of regime and people's social status. Thus, the Shang and Zhou bronze vessels were the most highly esteemed objects of their time.
Heavily affected by the culture of the Shang and Zhou dynasties, Anhui is a place where a large number of bronze vessels have been excavated.The bronze vessels housed in Anhui Provincial Museum are famous for theirrich meanings, colorful cultures, elaborate techniques and bright specialties throughout the nation.
The representatives are the articles unearthed from the tombs of the Shang Dynasty in Funan County, the tombs of Yue family in Tunxi, the Qunshu tombs in West Anhui, the Caihou tombs and the tomb of the Overlord of Chu State in Shouxian County. These articles, for example, the wine vessel veined with animal faces of the Shang Dynasty, the tripod caldron decorated with animal heads, the Caihou square kettle, Overlord Wu's bronze mirror, and the drum decorated with dragons and tigers, all reflect deferent characteristics of deferent cultures in the long history of more than 1,000 years. With the interweaving and inter-reflecting with each other of the Central China's culture, Qunshu Culture, the culture of Wu and Yue states and the Chu culture, the ancient regions of the Yangtze River drainage areas and the Huai River drainage areas were push forward for rapid development.