9/19/2012 1:56pm, #1
Sculpture of Chinese Wrestlers, c. 500BCE
From the British Museum. Nice shen fa. It looks like they were doing their stance training back in the Eastern Zhou dynasty.“Most people do not do, but take refuge in theory and talk, thinking that they will become good in this way” -- Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, II.4
9/19/2012 2:46pm, #2
What do you suppose its depicting? Could be from actual old wrestling, or just an artist crafting what wrestlers probably do. I think it kinda looks like the one on the right is gonna do tomoe nage.
9/19/2012 5:03pm, #3
Bronze figures of two wrestlers. These small, semi-naked figures are arranged in corresponding poses, but facing away from each other. They are shown with knees bent, bottoms out, backs straight, each gripping the other's right hand, while with their left hands they hold the other's belt.
Apart from tomb figurines, human sculpture was rare in China before the arrival of Buddhism from India. Chinese craftsmen were capable of rendering the human form but most bronze effigies were made as details for decorating larger ritual bronze vessels. For example, men appear in miniature as supports for ritual water basins, food containers, and lamps, or as decoration on door catches or chariot fittings. It is quite likely thai these figures performed a similar function.
Wrestling and acrobatics were popular in ancient China, as is clear from the later inclusion of this subject on painted lacquer wares and on moulded tomb bricks.
9/19/2012 6:36pm, #4
I think it's a fairly stylized representation of one of the ancestors of shuai jiao, either jiǎolì or shǒubó, the latter of which is related to Japanese sumo. Speaking of which, I've been meaning to post this video of Takanoyama Shuntaro (a Czech judoka called Pavel Bojar) competing in sumo versus much larger opponents:
It's some of the best competitive push hands I've ever seen, even though Mr Bojar has no CMA background.“Most people do not do, but take refuge in theory and talk, thinking that they will become good in this way” -- Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, II.4
9/20/2012 8:18am, #5
That is clearly two people in low horse doing chi sau.
9/20/2012 8:56am, #6
To expand on what Permalost was saying, you have to keep in mind that it's not likely the artist had a good idea about what wrestlers of the time were doing; any more than a mochachino-drinking hipster would be able to sketch an ankle-pick on his iPad.
9/20/2012 9:39am, #7
Read the curator's notes again, each is holding one of their opponent's hands and their belt.
It could be that elusive, mythical BC Chinese judo, jiǎolì/Jiao Di
They're just missing the horned helmets.
A combat wrestling system called juélì or jiǎolì (角力) is mentioned in the Classic of Rites (1st c. BCE). This combat system included techniques such as strikes, throws, joint manipulation, and pressure point attacks. Jiao Di became a sport during the Qin Dynasty (221–207 BCE). The Han History Bibliographies record that, by the Former Han (206 BCE – 8 CE), there was a distinction between no-holds-barred weaponless fighting, which it calls shǒubó (手搏), for which "how-to" manuals had already been written, and sportive wrestling, then known as juélì or jiǎolì (角力). Wrestling is also documented in the Shǐ Jì, Records of the Grand Historian, written by Sima Qian (ca. 100 BCE).
Last edited by W. Rabbit; 9/20/2012 9:45am at .
9/20/2012 9:43am, #8
9/20/2012 10:33am, #9
he's my favorite sumo to watch these days. remember, kids, sumo is streamed live on the net http://sumo.goo.ne.jp/hon_basho/torikumi/eizo_haishin/"Face punches are an essential character building part of a martial art. You don't truly love your children unless you allow them to get punched in the face." - chi-conspiricy
"When I was a little boy, I had a sailor suit, but it didn't mean I was in the Navy." - Mtripp on the subject of a 5 year old karate black belt
"Without actual qualifications to be a Zen teacher, your instructor is just another roundeye raping Asian culture for a buck." - Errant108
"Seriously, who gives a **** what you or Errant think? You're Asian males, everyone just ignores you, unless you're in a krotty movie." - new2bjj
9/20/2012 11:20am, #10