• 中文
  • EN
  • Français
  • 日本語
  • 한국어
  • 繁體中文

Celadon Sheep from Xiangyin Kiln

Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD)

Unearthed from the Tang tomb in Xianjia Lake, Changsha in 1976.

Height: 12cm, Length: 11.8cm

The sheep lies prostrate on the rectangular pedestal. It boasts the following features: horns curved, ears pricking up, eyes wide open, mouth closed, nostrils visible, a bushy beard, a thick neck and a fat body. It tails is slightly upward, and its four legs bend on the pedestal. It is cloven-hoofed. It is made out of superb craftsmanship, and the meekness of the sheep is vividly represented, especially in the depiction of the eyes. After the shaping of its form first, it was then graved and polished. The color was glazed later. With delicate grayish white body, it is under glazed. The glaze demonstrates the similar textual as the glass. The glaze and the body are well combined. It is a representative product from Yuezhou Kiln of Hunan.

The Tang Tomb in Xianjia Lake, from which this celadon sheep was unearthed, is one of the famous tombs dating back to Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD) in China. It was confirmed that this was a tomb of the beginning period of Tang Dynasty. The occupant of the tomb was a noble, holding a high official rank (at least above the fifth grade. The official ranks of Tang dynasty consist of nine grades all together). A lot of celadon figurines were also unearthed, all of which were produced by Yuezhou Kiln in Xiangyin. Other cultural relics excavated included: tomb guarding beasts; a figurine with human head, beast body and two wings; the 12 Chinese zodiac celadon figurines; figurines of warriors, figurines of civil officials, figurines of male and female servants; figurines of musicians; and figurines of various animals such as camels, horses, bulls, sheep, pigs, dogs, geese and ducks. There porcelain items are very exquisite, lively and vivid, thus having very high artistic value. They reflect the superb craftsmanship and skills in Yuezhou Kiln of Tang Dynasty.

Most of the celadon figurines produced by Yuezhou Kiln are solid, thus the body is very heavy. Larger pieces of celadon figurines are rare. The fine glaze, with transparent surface, looks like the glass. Light green and greenish yellow are the main colors of the glaze. Celadon figurines are prepared in a mould, and their forms are then shaped with some handiwork. Detailed parts are engraved with some strips. Finally, it is decorated and glazed with a certain amount of color paints.


Pottery Lamb

Eastern Han Dynasty (25 to 220AD)

Height: 4.3cm, length of the body: 6.6cm

Unearthed from Hui County, Henan province.

Collected by Palace Museum

Green glazed candlestick in the shape of sheep from Changsha Kiln

Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD)

Height: 13.2cm, diameter at the mouth: 2.2cm, diameter at the bottom: 9.8cm

Collected by Hunan Provincial Museum

Blue and white bowl with the design of three sheep, a pine tree, plum blossoms and bamboos

The reign of Jiajing Emperor (27 May 1521 – 23 January 1567) of Ming Dynasty

Height: 10.5cm, diameter at the mouth: 16.3cm, diameter at the bottom: 5.5cm

Collected by Palace Museum