The Lock Culture

- Jul 06, 2018-

The birth of Chinese locks has been going on for thousands of years. The wooden locks were found in the Yangshao cultural sites. The bronze locks appeared in the Western Zhou Dynasty. The metal locks were widely produced and used in the Eastern Han Dynasty. Until the mid-1950s, the Chinese ancient locks withdrew from the historical stage.

The wooden key used in the gate of the Lama Temple in the Tibetan area

The ancient Chinese lock has not only practical value, but also a precious historical evidence. It reflects the historical development track of woodworking crafts and hardware crafts from one aspect. From the aspects of its material, design, mechanical structure, organ structure, engraving and calligraphy, the lock involves many disciplines, woodworking, smelting and casting, forging cold work, fine art and calligraphy, copper and wood carving, and power and physics. Geometry, psychology and other disciplines can find traces in the locks, which reflect the social and political, economic, cultural, and living customs of the past.


The material of the lock basically has two major categories, one is a wooden lock and the other is a metal lock. The production of wooden locks must be processed by sawing and cutting, axe forming, chiseling holes, planing and drilling. Metal locks must be smelted, gold, silver, copper and iron, billet casting, cutting and cutting, welding and riveting, drilling and drilling, and polishing and other hardware processes. A lock from the raw material to the finished, I do not know how much work hard to use locksmiths!

After several generations of ingenious craftsmen's inventions and improvements, the locks produced can be said to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, and it is difficult to count accurate numbers. From the handed down locks, there are many boutiques, which are the crystallization of the wisdom of ancient craftsmen. It may be because the lock itself is an item that reflects confidentiality. The locksmith artisans have passed down from generation to generation, and the literati and the literati who have booked the book are rarely involved, resulting in historical records, official history and wild history are rarely recorded. The study of lock art is almost blank.

In fact, the connotation of the lock culture is still rich and colorful. The locks made by the locksmiths of the past dynasties are so beautiful that they are so beautiful. I will choose a few from the list to make some introductions.


Such as Seiko engraving "double happiness lock". There is a pair of Chen Bangren bronze collections, all of which are made of white copper. The shape is the same as that of ordinary locks. The front is "concave" and the end is triangular and rectangular. It is 5.2 cm long and 2.9 cm high. Kong Yi is "艹" shape, one is "mountain" shape, and there are "Wang Da You" in the lock. "Wang Dayou" is a century-old shop in Shanghai. It was opened in the vicinity of Xiaodongmen, Zhonghua Road. It is a famous copper tin workshop. The front faces of the two locks are carved into a double-line "Hi". One side is equipped with a picture of "Hehe Erxian", the right side is Hexian, the hand holds the lotus flower, is higher than the top of the head, dressed in a flower robe, leans slightly to the right, faces the left side to laugh; the left side of the fairy hand holds the fairy box, From the gap between the lid and the bottom of the box, a cloud of smoke rises and lifts a sun, and the two immortals face each other, facing "hi".

"Kylin sent the child" map, the right side of a fairy, hand-held palace fan in front of the road, and back to look forward to the latter; on the left is a scholar dressed up immortal, riding on the unicorn, right hand hold a wish, sit in front of Boy.

The words "Hi", "Hehe Erxian", and "Kirin Sending a Child" all have story legends.

According to legend, this "hi" word is related to Wang Anshi.

The word "hi" is created by Wang Anshi. Once, Wang Anshi went to Beijing to take the test, and saw a wealthy family of people in front of the lanterns, and a pair of people on the lamp hang a couple of people on the lamp, saying that anyone who can marry the couple, but who will marry the lady, but no one Right up. Wang Anshi saw this interesting, but the exam was not taken care of, the expedition ended, and the family suddenly sent people to his house, asking him to be a guest. Wang Anshi stared at it and thought it would come up. The master saw his talents and agility, and he was a talented person. Because he had to ride the dragon quickly, he was very happy. When the cave was in the candlelight, he also knew the title of the gold medal. Wang Anshi couldn’t help himself, and he spread the paper and inked the two hi-words. , expressing the joy of being happy. Since then, "hi" has spread.

"Hi", used to call double happiness, is actually an icon. In the folk, it is a well-known and auspicious icon. When the smart locksmith custom-made