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Costume Trunk

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Period: Guangxu reign (1875-1908), Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Dimensions: height: 70 cm, length: 95 cm, width: 60 cm

Costumes are kept in such kind of trunks. Costumes of traditional Chinese operas vary greatly due to the thematic division of operas into civil those characterized by singing and acting ("civil operas", or "wenxi") and others featuring battle scenes or martial arts ("martial operas" or "wuxi"). For convenience, the costume trunks are divided into "grand costume trunk", "second costume trunk", and "third costume trunk". Usually costumes for civil operas, such as robes of fortune and nobility (fugui yi), python robes, zhezi robes, over-shoulder capes are kept in the so-called "grand costume trunk". Second costume trunk is for martial costumes, such as armor suits, archer's robe, fighting clothes (a.k.a. "hero clothes" or "embracing clothes"), close-fitting fighting clothes, etc, while the third trunk usually contains undergarments, boots, padded vest (pang'ao), white inner collars (huling), colored trousers, and fighting shoes. There are also stage prop trunks (baxiang) and trunks for miscellaneous objects (zaxiang). Keepers in charge of these trunks are traditionally called "Xiangshangde", literally meaning "(those who are) above the trunks". 

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