It was during the Tang Dynasty that China’s
outstanding technological and aesthetic
achievements opened to external influences,
resulting in the introduction of numerous new
forms of self-expression, coupled with internal
innovation and considerable social freedom.
Tang Dynasty reflected the greatest age for
Chinese poetry, painting, and sculpture,
although there was a notable decline in
sculptures following repression of the faith by
pro-Taoism administrations later in the regime.
During the Tang Dynasty, restrictions were
placed on the number of objects that could be
included in tombs, an amount determined by
individual's social rank. In spite of the
limitations, a striking variety of tomb
– known as mingqi – have been excavated.
Entire retinues of ceramic figures –
warriors, animals, entertainers, musicians,
guardians and every other necessary category
assistant – were buried with the dead in order
provide for the afterlife. Warriors (lokapala) like
this one were put in place to defend the dead,
while horses/camels were provided for
and officials to run his estate in the hereafter.