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Taotie

As the ancient Chinese mythology says, the Taotie is a monster that was extremely greedy of eating and would eat anything it could see, even its body. So, the image of the taotie on some bronze wares is just a big head and a big mouth without body.
without doubt, the monster became a symbol of greediness and was used to describe people too gluttonous or too gready.

In ritual vessels of the Shang and Zhou Dynasties, there are oftenly a ferocious animal motif, some beasts even hold a human head in the mouth, symbolizing the power of a ruler. The motif was called "taotie pattern" by later generations.

According to the ancient Chinese mythology, taotie was the fifth of the nine sons of the dragon, the horrible creature which was fond of eating human beings. However, the taotie was an abstract expression of the dark side of ancient society. The monster was used to symbolize the barbarian slave society, which was the most important connotation of the ancient taotie culture.