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In Chinese religion, a troublesome spirit that roams the world, causing misfortune, illness, and death. These were believed to be the spirits of individuals who were not buried properly or whose families neglected to make proper memorial offerings. The term also refers to a Chinese Neolithic tripod pottery pitcher, first made with solid legs and then acquiring bulbous hollow-shaped legs and to an early Chinese bronze ritual bowl with handles. The latter often bore writing as well as complex designs. The bronze gui was known in the Shang period but was especially common in Western Zhou. These items were used in protective rituals as talismans devised to ward gui away from the family abode.