Bonze. Dong Son Culture, c.3rd – 2nd century BC.
Diameter of the upper face: 78.5cm; Diameter of the base: 79.9cm; Height: 61.5cm.
Discovered in Hoang Ha village, Phu Xuyen districts, Hanoi.
Discovered in 1937, the Hoang Ha drum is also among the most beautiful Dong Son drums. The drum has a well-balanced shape and is beautifully decorated.
It has four parts: upper face, rim, body and base. The upper face over edges the rim. In the middle of the upper face is a decorated 16-petal sun in relief which is surrounded by 15 circle bands. The patterns include geometric shapes, circles, especially motifs reflecting disguised people, feathers, scenes of people’s lives and 6 boats moving from left to right. Motifs reflecting significant activities of the Dong Son people include boat racing, warriors holding arms, and prisoners being judged. Between the boats are two or four mythical birds. The rim is curved, with relief of boats, disguised people and long-beaked birds. The body is cylindrical, the base is truncated cone-shaped and slightly flared.
The Hoang Ha bronze drum is a special example which is classified in the same group as the Ngoc Lu drum, the Song Da drum, and the Co Loa drum. With unique and vivid decoration reflecting the rich material and spiritual life of the Dong Son people who practiced wet rice agriculture, the Hoang Ha bronze drum reflects the sophistication of bronze casting art during the early period of state building of the Vietnamese people.