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Jar with Eel-yellow Glaze

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Kiln: Jingdezhen kilns
Period: Yongzheng reign (1723-1735), Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)
Glazetype: eel-yellow glaze
Dimensions: height: 32.7 cm, mouth diameter: 30.6 cm, foot diameter: 27.3 cm

The jar has a contracted mouth. Its swelling body tapers to a relatively narrow bottom that is finished with a foot ring. In the foot ring in seal script (zhuan shu), the Yongzheng Emperor's reign mark is incised in intaglio. Even and lustrous, the glaze is the crystallized mixture of iron and magnesium. The olive-colored glaze is popularly named "eel yellow" (shanyu huang) for the similarity to the color of the fish's skin. Yellow-glazed porcelain ware was created in southeastern China's Jingdezhen official kilns during the Hongwu reign (1368-1398), and was made during subsequent reigns and dynasty. Yellow-glazed porcelains were provided only to imperial families because "yellow" is a homonym for "imperial". The color demonstrated dignity and supremacy.

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