Warring state 4th century BCE

8.5cm high, 10.5cm diameter


Description: This type of mini-sized, unglazed jar appeared during the Eastern Zhou dynasty and early Han dynasty. The jar has a rather flat base with, unusually, three tiny supporting knobs, suggesting the firing technique might be similar to that employed in Song dynasty some fifteen centuries later. The jar was grey after firing, and the jar’s base has dark grey, purple and reddish hues, which could result from being used as a cooking vessel. The natural beauty of the finish comes from its delicate surface patterns, formed by impressions of a rough-woven fibre, possibly cotton or straw. It has a thin rim and two pairs of tubular ‘ears’ in parallel on opposite sides of the rim. These finely-made ears have holes and allowed a thin handle to go through to lift the jar.

Provenance: An Australian collection

Reference: For a similar jar of this type, see Chinese Ceramics, Regina Krahl, 1994, P46