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Antique Furniture

Ming Dynasty desk and chairs displayed in the Summer Palace
With a time-honored history, the handicraft of furniture formed its unique characteristics in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). Furniture of the Ming Dynasty Style refers to the ones from the Ming Dynasty to the early Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). An important feature of Ming Dynasty furniture is that the items are beautifully shaped. The furniture is simple and conveys a sense of stability. The size and proportion of the different parts adhere to aesthetic principles but take practical use into consideration. It combines aesthetics, mechanics and practical use into one integral whole.

Ming Dynasty furniture was made with consummate skill. It combined round and square, wide and narrow, thick and thin patterns and lines in sharp contrast and thus formed the unique structure of Ming Dynasty furniture. All parts of the furniture were pieced together without visible joins. The outline is natura1 and fluid. The surface was polished with wax to make it look bright, smooth and clean and to reveal its natural beauty.

The Ming Dynasty Style Furniture is also well known for its exquisite shapes. The S-shaped chair back is unique in appearance, at the same time fit to the physiological nature of humans. The different combinations of lines and planes at various proportions can produce different artistic flavor.

The decorations are mainly engraved lines and small areas of circular carving and embossment. There may, however, also be wood, ivory and diamond inlays in the patterns of landscapes, flowers and birds or small bronze and silver ornamentation. The refined ornamentation in small areas forms a sharp contrast with the furniture's overall clean and simple appearance. The line of the edges of the piece is shaped in different lengths and widths depending on the grain of the timber to create a true, harmonious effect, so that the piece looks natural and balanced. Generally, carvings are only conducted in a small area, which can attract more attention to its delicate decoration.

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The Mortise and Tenon Joints of Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
The most basic joint in Chinese furniture making is the mortise and tenon.
Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
Historically, Qing dynasty style furniture is important furniture. It comes from the last dynasty in China's long history of rule by emperors, and it represents, quite literally, the end of a cultural continuity that persisted uninterrupted for thousands of years.
Category of Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
Document boxes designed to double as pillows tell us something of the dangers of travel in China. These boxes let travelers sleep on their valuables. Clever jewelry boxes could open to reveal both a hiden mirror and hidden compartments to store valuables.
Fakes of Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
The Chinese,as everyone know, excel at the art of reproduction. They have been practicing this art probably for as long as they have been making originals.
Finish of Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
The key point to remember is that these antiques age well. The predominant wood in late Qing furniture is a Chinese elm, either southern or northern, and its deep colors and rich, lively grain grow more beautiful with time and wear.
Wood of Qing Dynasty Style Furniture
The type and quality of woods plays as important a role in antique Chinese furniture as it does in Western pieces, sometimes more so. Identical tables, for example, from the same region and the same period but made from different types of woods can have different prices - differences that could put two extra zero in front of the decimal point.

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