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Octogonal cup

China, around 830s
Gold, height 9 cm
2005.1.00918

The eight panels of the cup are decorated with musicians and a dancer. The long curly hair and billowing clothing identify them as Central Asian. The handles are made in the form of bearded faces, also evidently foreign.  As the theme of the design is revelry and entertainment, the cup was probably used for wine drinking. The cup is the largest of the type known.