Rubbing of a Relief from the Wu Liang Shrine Artist: Unknown

20th century

Asian Art

Not on view

This modern rubbing reproduces some of the ornate stone reliefs from one of the Wu family’s mortuary shrines, which dates to 147–68 c.e. The relief was located on the back wall of the shrine, as seen in blue in the drawing here. The top two registers narrate stories of exemplary men and women, while at the center of the register below, a pavilion provides the setting for paying homage to an illustrious individual. The large, seated man at the center, here partially damaged, has been variously identified as a ruler, the family patriarch, or the deceased. He receives devotions from the people gathered in the pavilion. Given its emphasis on veneration, this particular relief would have provided a fitting backdrop for the elaborate funerary rituals and ancestor worship that would have taken place at the shrine.


ink on paper, rubbing


with mounting: 46 1/2 in. (118.11 cm)
without mounting: 43 3/4 in. (111.13 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Cheng Chi

Accession Number



Eastern Han dynasty (25–220 C.E.)


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Cheng Chi; gift in 1986 to Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.
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