As early as the fourth century BCE in China, clay burial figurines called mingqi, or “spirit vessels,” replaced the live servants, musicians, warriors, and domestic animals that had once been sacrificed to serve the needs of the deceased individual or couple interred in the tomb. By the late Han dynasty (206 BCE—220 CE) even modest tombs included a full array of creature comforts intended to make eternity more bearable. Invaluable for the material information they provide about life in early China, these sculptures also document changing aesthetic values. The distinctive forms of this standing court lady, for example, are most characteristic of the high Tang dynasty (618–907). Chinese literature from around the middle of the eighth century comments on the imposing physical presence of the women of the court, where plumpness had become the stylish ideal, supplanting the slender, lithe female form of the previous generation (see Smart Museum acc. nos. 1973.66 and 1973.197). Garments have become long and loose fitting, hairstyles exotic and asymmetrical.