Room 1


Case 1

Tang dynasty ceramics 唐代陶瓷

Sancai 三彩 or “three-colour” lead-glazed earthenware, Henan Province 河南省, Tang dynasty 唐代 (618-907)

The three eponymous colours are leaf-green, yellowish-white and amber. The runny glaze effect visible on the surface of the sancai, which is one of
the characteristics of this type of ware, is uncontrolled and is the result of the particular consistency of the glazes used. The potters tried to confine the
colours to certain areas by making use of relief elements on the surface or by employing resist methods.

  1. Globular jar 三彩罐

    Tang dynasty, late 7th or 8th c.


    In spite of the limits imposed by its definition, the so-called “three-colour” technique actually includes other colours, such as a dark cobalt blue, employed in the same way.

  2. Incense jar with concentric grooved lines 尊式爐

    Tang dynasty, late 7th or 8th c.


    This object’s cylindrical shape is strongly reminiscent of antique bronzes and of Han dynasty 漢 (206 B.C. - 220 A.D.) lacquerware cosmetic boxes.
  3. Wannian globular jar raised on moulded pedestal 萬年形罐

    Tang dynasty, late 7th or 8th c.


    The term wannian 萬年 literally means “ten thousand years” and applies to jars in everyday use. These jars typically have a short neck or no neck at all and their elegant outlines describe a full, rounded body.

  4. Marbled earthenware box with lid 絞胎紋盒

    Tang dynasty (618-907)


    The marbled effect covering the entire surface is obtained by kneading together clays of different colours.

    White-glazed stoneware and porcelain 白瓷器, Hebei Province 河北省, Tang Dynasty 唐代 (618-907).

  5. Bowl with spreading sides and rounded rim 邢窯瓷卷口碗

    Tang dynasty, probably 9th c.


    This bowl has been ascribed to the Xing kilns 邢窯 and represents the first appearance of porcelain, a technical advance of unrivalled importance in the history of ceramics.
  6. Stoneware ewer with dragon-headed handle 弁口龍耳水注

    Tang dynasty, probably 7th c.


    This type of ewer is clearly modelled on pre-existing metal versions, which in turn owed much to Near-Eastern or Hellenistic silver prototypes.