bells in the West
In May 2010,
during a trip to New York, USA, Dutch anthropologist Hendrik Wittenberg
and his wife Babs visited a curio shop in China Town. They
came across a basket full of tiger bells. He describes them as follows:
bells are made of bronze, very light and poorly cast. The color
of the bronze is very light. When I asked the Chinese lady at the
pay desk about the meaning of the characters, she said 'Something
like: provide the people with what they need, like food, water,
actually I dont know
When I asked her what name she used for the bells when she made
back orders the lady said Well, Sir, if I would know the answers
to all your questions, I wouldnt be sitting here in this shop,
wouldnt I?. Do you want to buy them? So I bought two
bells, $ 2,- each...
These are alternative,
new tiger bells, similar to a larger bell from another report,
said to be from the Qing dynasty
and to a smaller bell from Burma
and a bell of an unknown size from Korea.
The fact that the shop had such a large quantity of these bells
could indicate that they were not only for sale to tourists but
also to the local Chinese community.
dimensions of the bell are:
- width: 3,9 cm
- height: 3,9 cm.
- side: 3,1 cm.
- hoop: 1 cm.
Chinese characters on each side are clearly visible
de Jong, Amsterdam, bought three small tiger bells in 2002,
in a Chinese store in Amsterdam. The bells are of the alternative
type because of the whiskers. The design looks more like a cat's
head than a tiger (as with the bells from Syria
and Korea). No further details
The face looks more like that of a cat than of a tiger
Dimensions: wide 2 cm., high 1,7 cm., side 1,1 cm., hoop 0,5 cm
the bells from New York this shop in
Amsterdam had many of these bells in stock, probably to be sold
not only to tourists but also to the local Chinese community.
and donated to the author by Christine de Jong, December 2006.
See also reports from
Malta and Great
and photographs are copyrighted,
for information please contact F.
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