Beijing exhibition to display relics of ancient China, Rome

created: 2009-07-27

East will meet West at a major exhibition showcasing relics from ancient China and Rome in Beijing later this month.

The exhibition will feature 489 items dating from China's Qin and Han dynasties (221 B.C. to 220 A.D.) and from ancient Rome, gathered from more than 70 Chinese and Italian museums.

The Exhibition for Qin-Han and Roman Civilization would run from July 30 to Oct. 7 at the Beijing World Art Museum of the China Millennium Monument, said museum spokesman Fang Xiaofeng on Friday.

Ancient Rome and the Qin and Han dynasties prospered at around the same time and produced civilizations that influenced human development for centuries after, said Fang.

The show reflected the Confucian philosophy of seeking common ground while accommodating differences, Fang said.

"It was the first time that major human civilizations co-existed," said Xu Bo, chief editor of World Knowledge Magazine. He is scheduled to deliver a lecture at the Museum during exhibition.

"The comparison of the two will be an inspiration for maintaining cultural diversity in the current world," Xu said.

Among the exhibits from Italy is the famous sculpture of a girl defending a dove from a serpent from the National Museum of Rome, which dates from the Second Century A.D..

Another is "Alexander and Roxana," a painting in the first century depicting Alexander the Great's marriage, from Pompeii.

China contributions include an elaborate oblong bronze mirror that weights 56 kg and dates from the Han Dynasty.

A porcelain jar made in 175 A.D. is one of the oldest examples of Chinese ceramic art.

Fang said the exhibits gave a comprehensive picture of life in that age.

The exhibition will promote "Chinese culture year" in Italy next year. It will also be taken to Luoyang, Henan Province, in October, and to Milan and Rome in 2010.

(Xinhua News Agency July 27, 2009)

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