it comes to china - that is, porcelain wares - it’s only
natural that China be famous for it…I mean, where do you
think the name came from?
It is true, though, that Chinese porcelain wares have
historically been, and still are among the most highly
respected in the industry, and are exported with high
appraisals around the entire world. It
is fitting that the Chinese should be such experts in
porcelain wares, as porcelain has been a part of their
society through a great part of their history.
began in China during the Shang and Zhou dynasties. Though it was still a very primitive form of the wares,
archaeologists have found simple porcelain in the middle and
lower parts of the Yangtze and Yellow river regions.
porcelain wares, in the more modern sense appeared during
the Han dynasty. From
the point where it was first developed, different styles
formed throughout the different periods, and they became
their own, individual styles.
The primary forms that sprung from the Han dynasty
were celadon porcelain and black porcelain, as they were the
types that were highest in production.
Celadon porcelain continued its development
throughout the dynasties, reaching an important step in the
late Tang dynasty, when celadon porcelain’s production
techniques evolved and matured so that large scale
manufacture became possible.
Simultaneously, white porcelain - having made its
appearance in the later Northern and Southern dynasty - also
reached its peak.
Celadon porcelain is characterized by its simple,
yet quite refined shapes, by its jade-like glaze, by its
solid substance, and by its quite distinctive style.
As the wares of celadon porcelain were produced in
the Longquan County, in the Zhejiang Province, it became the
most valued, and became more generally known as longquan
qingci. This is its Chinese name, and it means
“greenish porcelain.” However, you might wonder why then, it is known as celadon
porcelain in the West.
Celadon, the person carrying the name, was the hero
of a revered French writer Honore d”Urfe, in his romance
L’Astrée, of 1610; Celadon was the lover of the heroine
was depicted as a young man who dresses all in green, and
this fashion became the rage in most of Europe.
It was just about this time that the Chinese
porcelain qingci made its way into Paris, and won its first
people began to compare the color of the qingci with the
color of Celadon’s suit, and began calling the porcelain
“celadon,” which spread to other countries.