History of Chinese Calligraphy – The Golden Age of Chinese Calligraphy: Han Dynasty (漢朝/Han Chao/Han Ch’ao) and the Age of Text


The Formation of a Literati Class During Han Dynasty as an Ascendant for the Tradition of Chinese Calligraphy

After only a decade and a half, the Qin Dynasty fell apart. However the Han nation, under the direction of Liu Bang, quickly defeated the 18 Kingdoms to reunify China. The name for the Han Dynasty thus comes from the name of the ancient prinipality of of Han, in modern-day Si Chuan and Southern Shaanxi. Unlike the fall of the Zhou, the 18 Kingdoms period was only a few years long, and the Imperial model was rapidly reasserted. (Han dynasty map)  Central to the success of the Imperial model was the dedication of a class of scribes, officials and courtiers referred to collectively as the ‘literati’. These men (they were usually men) of letters provided the centralized government and social institutions with legitimacy by carrying out and contributing to the political discourse of their times.

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Scripts Styles of Chinese Calligraphy: An Overview of Xing Shu (行書) – the Running Script Style


What is the Running Script Style (Xing Shu / 行書)  in Chinese Calligraphy?

It was not until after the development of Zhuan Shu, Li Shu and Kai Shu that Calligraphers began to increase the contrast of Lift and Press, improvise with Stroke Order, and even link strokes together. The Running Script is not really a script in the sense that the former, regular Scripts are: there are not nearly as many rules or conventions. Running Script may more accurately be described as a Style, and each Calligrapher will have his or her own personal approach. The Running.

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