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Rare censer of celadon

A THREE-legged censer of pale green and white celadon is a superb example of celadon ritual ware from the legendary Longquan kiln of the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279).

The delicate incense burner in the Shanghai Museum has a body of classic clear pale green glaze reflecting varied depths of color, and a rim of pale white glaze.

The cencer is 9.6-centimeter high and 12.1 centimeters in diameter.

With the popularity of Taoism in ancient China, censers in both porcelain and bronze were often used as ritual vessels.

A three-legged censer is typical because the number "three" represents stability.

The Longquan kiln in southwestern Zhejiang Province was one of the largest and most famous celadon production areas in ancient China, containing more than 200 separate kilns. It was located mostly in what is now Lishui Prefecture.

Celadon production had a long history at Longquan and related sites, but it was not until the Five Dynasties (AD 907-960) and Northern Song (960-1127) period that production of scale truly began. The era of the greatest ceramic production was in the Southern Song, Yuan (1271-1368) and Ming (1368-1644) dynasties.

Celadon is a family of transparent, crackle glazes produced in a wide variety of colors and generally used on porcelain or stoneware clay bodies.

Colors can be white, gray, blue, green or yellow, depending on the mineral content of the glaze, the thickness of the applied glaze and the type of clay.

The most famous shades range from very pale green crackle to deep intense green, often created to mimic the green shades of jade. The color is produced by iron oxide in the glaze or clay body.

Celadon is usually fired in a reduction atmosphere kiln that removes oxygen and other.

As with most glazes, crazing (a glaze defect) can occur, but if it is desirable, it is referred to as crackle glaze.


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