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Family Heirloom

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Japanese Pottery256 of 339Asian covered dishAsian Jar
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Posted 2 years ago


(2 items)

Heirloom from China for 3 generation. Think it's from Japan. Anyone have an idea of it's age? Any idea of the history around this style of pottery?

Mystery Solved


  1. jwendell222 jwendell222, 2 years ago
    Hi Skippy, most unusual piece you have with archer and pine tree typical of Chinese representation. Haven't seen anything like it. The three character mark is unusual too, normally would be four or six characters. It reads top down and right to left ''Chenghua Period', a Ming Dynasty reign from 1465 to 1487. A fourth character 'Made' (or 'Make') normally follows "Period'. Probably early to mid 20th century. I'm curious as to why you attribute it to Japan, which is possible, though there is nothing about the piece to indicate that. Best wishes, Jim
  2. SkippyKam, 2 years ago
    jwendell222...Thank you so much for your input. You will get a laugh regarding the Japanese thinking. I've been searching all the Chinese Dynasty's and couldn't find any pottery with similarity. Next I tried to key the armor depicted on the archer which compared closer to Japanese. Finally I sent the photo to someone from "Antique Road Show" who indicated it was Japanese. I greatly appreciate your help. It's giving me a lead to further research back to China!!!!
  3. jwendell222 jwendell222, 2 years ago
    The ornamentation on your vase is called moriage. You can Google that for in depth information. The basic clay form was fired at a relatively low temperature, and a refined moriage slip added and shaped as a paste, and some added by tube as you would decorate a cake, and then fired again at a higher temperature. Examples of this are much more prevalent from Japan, but this style was also produced in China. Below are some examples of Chinese moriage, starting with one closest to your vase. I hope this helps with your research. Good luck, Jim
  4. SkippyKam, 2 years ago
    Jim...Thanks again! I'm guessing soft paste and moriage are synonymous?
  5. jwendell222 jwendell222, 2 years ago
    Moriage is the style of decoration. Refined clay (slip) of varying consistency was shaped by hand and applied to the item or squeezed from a bag in the way cake frosting is applied. The warrior and pine needles were apparently sculpted before the first firing, and the details on the warrior and branches of the tree applied before the second firing.

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