UGR-06007      Meipˇ¦ing vase with underglaze-red decoration

                          of lotus scrolls and dragon.

Yuan dynasty, Hu-tian Kiln, unmarked.
Height: 44.3cm, Mouth diameter: 7.3cm, Foot diameter: 14.3cm, Interior foot diameter: 0.3cm   Weight: 4670g
This ware has been cleansed with Oxalic Acid to remove dirt and viscidities to restore its original luster for collection and preservation.


Tower circular mouth, plum-shaped body and slightly flared foot are classic Meipˇ¦ing features in Yuan dynasty. 

Joined at three sections. Decorations were carved on modeled clay with acicular engraving tools. From top to bottom: lotus petals with Buddhist emblems, lotus scrolls, clouds and a dragon with four-digit paws, leaf scrolls, lotus petals. Only blank spots were painted with copper red pigment. Transparent glaze was applied on the whole vase before firing.  

Pure underglaze-red porcelains are rare because copper oxide used as pigment is easily volatilized under high temperature reductive process. 

White glaze appears light green with craze.          

Dragons in Yuan dynasty are drawn with a snakeˇ¦s body with an open mouth, teeth revealing head, relatively small in proportion to the body, antlers, and three or four-digit paws. Dragonsˇ¦ appearances are often accompanied with pointed tip or flame-shaped clouds in the background.

Lotus as one of the earliest floral designs, its long lasting appeal reflects through decorated porcelains from Yuan dynasty. Common features including protruding pistil, heart-shape petals with an extending tip and gourd-shape foliage.

Buddhist emblems are important design elements in Yuan dynasty. They are mostly found on the shoulder or base of a vase or as center pieces of large dishes coupled with deformed lotus petals.  

Some common Buddhist emblems found on porcelains include double horns, silver ingots, rhino horns, fire pearls, flames, corals, fire wheels, tritons and double coins.

Unglazed area on the bottom. Grayish white clay feels rough with uneven iron rust and obvious scraping marks.


Copper red pigment has very different chemical characteristics from cobalt pigment used for underglaze-blue porcelains. Sensitive nature of copper red pigment under high temperature has led to undesirable smears of line works, and occasional black, green or yellow spots.

Transparent air bubbles of different sizes distribute evenly on the surface glaze.

Grayish white clay mixed using binary formula. Less refined clay quality with a large number of air holes.