Published Sep 30 2013, by

Columns with Confucian Scenes

Pillars such as these may have guarded a path in a formal garden complex.  They feature ornate relief carvings of auspicious and powerful motifs from the world of Confucian scholar-officials including dragons, lotus petals, and the character for longevity, shou (壽).  This dense, ordered imagery all relates to the strict mindset and complex ceremonies associated with Confucianism.  A faceted central section that resembles an ancient bronze ritual vessel contains framed vignettes of the life of Confucius, a sage and teacher to be emulated and venerated.