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Chinese Dragons (Images of Asia)

4.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0195928563
ISBN-10: 0195928563
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Roy Bates first became captivated by Chinese dragons when working in the country in the late 1970s, and has since written numerous articles on the dragon, the Forbidden City, and other aspects of Chinese culture and history.
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Product Details

  • Series: Images of Asia
  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (August 29, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195928563
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195928563
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 0.4 x 5.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,454,950 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on October 23, 2002
Format: Hardcover
For many centuries that the dragon has been the symbol of China, and has been considered as immortal and omnipresent ever since ancient times. It has belonged to the people, and it has also been the symbol of monarchy and supreme power. The dragon was a mythical beast. It was a concept. But most Chinese people, indeed most Asian people, were convinced that it existed. There are many occasions when there were claims that it had been seen, even as recently as 1920. No other creature in the world could have produced such a far-reaching influence on the mind of man.
Unlike the European dragon, it was considered a beneficent beast, until the Buddhists introduced the concept of evil dragons. Yet the basic belief was always that it had noble spiritual qualities that were unconquerable.
This book has been written by an author who has lived for many years in China researching into its history. It is in an easy-to-read style and is dedicated to the dragon and its many offshoots and variations. The pictures are delightful. It gives details of what a dragon was, where it was used, and what it was called. The reader will become more acquainted with the dragon, and will gain a greater understanding of this magnificent beast. It will interest and please the serious student and the enthusiastic Chinaphile alike.
It would make a perfect Christmas present.
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Format: Hardcover
This book, though short, provides a remarkably detailed survey of the Chinese dragon as represented in the art of his native land. Beginning with an overview of early dragon representations and possible sources of inspiration, Mr. Bates' book goes to considerable effort to describe the many variant images and beliefs that may be found regarding dragons throughout China. I have a hard time finding the kind of information brought together here - dragons in architecture, dragons as represented on dragon robes, the beings and images popularly represented as sons of the dragon - anywhere other than highly specialized scholarly tomes. Finding as much as Mr. Bates has put forth in Chinese Dragons in such an accessible volume is a remarkably pleasant surprise. The twenty-four colour plates are just about worth the price of admission all by themselves. The author clearly knows and loves his subject.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I wanted to know about Chinese dragons. That's exactly what this book is about, although I could not find the four-clawed, no horns dragon which my aunt bought in China in the 1970's. 66 pages long, plus excellent Chinese history in names and years, bibliography, and index. 45 illustrations. Book is about 8 X5 inches in size. All good but extremely expensive at over $50. This is a first edition from 2002. I imagine there were no more printings because of the price.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a fascinating book, and I concur with the other reviewers. It is erudite, authoratative, and written in an easy-to-read style. The pictures are a delight.
It would make a perfect gift for anyone who has been to China or wants to go there,
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A little book that takes care of the history of a legendary beautiful creature, the Dragon.
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