Monday, December 18, 2006

Protected Sites:Site of Ding Kiln in Jianci Village

The Ding Kiln Site is located in Jianci Village of Quyang County, Hebei Province.

Ding Kiln was a famous site of the Song Dynasty (960-1279). First discovered by the Imperial Palace Museum in 1951, large-scale excavations were conducted by a Hebei cultural relics team at the Ding Kiln Site between 1960 and 1960. The findings indicate that the kiln was built during the late Tang Dynasty (618-907), flourished in the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127) and declined in the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368).

The Ding Kiln was famous for its white pottery wares, mainly shaped into bowls and plates. The ware has an exquisite base and a bright and smooth white glaze that reveals some blackish-yellow or grayish-yellow hues. Most of the wares were decorated with complicated, but clearly arranged prints or carvings depicting various flowers and animals. During the Northern Song Dynasty, the site became one of the important kilns in the north and produced a large number of exquisite wares for the imperial family and feudal officials. Wares made for the imperial family were mainly adorned with dragon-phoenix patterns that employed masterly crafts. Also unearthed at the site were a few black, dark reddish-brown and green-glazed shards.

As an important pottery kiln of the north, the Ding Kiln of Jianci Village greatly influenced the technical development around the country. Hebei, Shanxi as well as the provinces south of the Yangtze River all followed suit, thus forming the Ding Kiln Style. To date the unearthed pottery kilns belonging to the Ding Kiln Style include the Lincheng Kiln of Hebei Province, Longquanwu Kiln of Beijing, a number of kilns from Shanxi Province and Jingdezhen Kiln of Jiangxi Province.

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