This large bell doesn’t have a “clapper” inside—it would have been rung by striking it with a hanging wooden beam. The ringing of bells called temple-goers to prayer, helped the living communicate with spirits and gods, and announced the time of day. A village leader and three others commissioned this bell as a donation to a local temple or shrine.
Translation of the bell’s inscription:
A bell was made for the Shifang Hall in Lijiang Village, Du City, Chang’an County. Village chief Liu Changxi and three other people [from the same community] initiated [this event]. [This bell was] cast by metal worker Qiang Ji from Shide Village, Liquan County on the ninth day of the 10th month of the fifth year of Yongzheng Reign [of the Qing Dynasty; i.e. AD 1727].