Heian Period Green Glazed Jar


A green-glazed jar fired from the Nara period’s end to the Heian period’s beginning. A spherical body with a broad hem base and a lead glaze is applied on top of the white slip.

This type of glazed ware, known as Nara Sansai (tricoloured ware), was modelled on the Chinese Tang Sancai, with a form in the vein of Sue ware, and was intended for ritual or practical use rather than burial ware. The green glazed ware like this piece is inferred to be made slightly later than the tricoloured ware and has been excavated from several sites. It is an important example that retains the echo of the Silk Roads and is an archetype of Japanese medieval pottery.

It has aged overall after many years in the ground but has largely retained its original form. It is stored in an old box labelled “Green glazed jar, Heian period.”

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