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Black Crêpe Silk Gauze "Loyal" Hat

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Period: Guangxu reign (1875-1908), Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Dimensions: height: 20 cm, width: 53 cm, mouth diameter: 17 cm

Worn by officials, its starched extensions attached to the lower part on the back serve as indications of the wearer's role in the opera. Square-shaped ends of the extensions allude to integrity, round-shaped ends to buffoonish character, and pointed-shape treacherous character. In the Peking Opera Assembly of Heroes (Qunying hui), for instance, the strategist Lu Su (172-217), who contributes to the establishment of the kingdom of Wu (222-280) during the Three Kingdoms period (220-265), wears such hat with square-shaped starched extensions. 

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