Tea Container with Green Glaze, known as AOGAKI

  • Tang dynasty
  • 8c
  • Sansai ware, one-color glazed type (green glaze)
  • H-4.2 D-6
Catalogue Entry

This small jar was symmetrically formed on the wheel and its mouth has been cut vertically in careful finish. Glaze has also in applied to the interior of the jar. The thick glaze at the base of the mouth and the torso has thoroughly melted on the surface, creating a true sense of depth. The white body clay shows here and there on the bottom.

A small jar used as a cosmetics jar with almost the same shape, formation, size and mouth diameter as this jar has been excavated in Chang'an province, and it is thought that this Miho jar was also originally used as a cosmetics jar. It is not clear when this jar came to Japan, and from the sections of stubborn, but light, dirt staining on the interior, it would seem that this jar was buried at one point in its history.

Today this jar is used as a chaire tea container for the tea ceremony, and its round swelling, lively form reminiscent of fruit inspired its name, "Aogaki," or "green persimmon."

The interior of the lid of the box is inscribed with a reference to astringent tea and astringent persimmons by its former owner Dojin Ishida Mosaku. We can get a sense of Ishida's playful spirit from his sprightly, punning phrasing. Today this jar is fitted with two separate lids, one made of Shino Oribe ware with a jewel‐shaped finial and the other from ivory.