20_09

Arrow vase with guan glaze. Stoneware with crackled glaze. Height: 120 mm. Diameter: 76 mm. Guan ware 官窯. Hangzhou, Zhejiang province 浙江省, 杭州; Yuan dynasty, about AD 1279–1368. On loan from Sir Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art. PDF 91. British Museum © The Trustees of the British Museum

Guan stoneware 'arrow' vase with twelve lobed body and a tall cylindrical neck with two handles. The vase has thick bluish-grey glaze with brown-stained crackle.

It is modelled on the shape of an antique ‘arrow pot’, a vessel with short tubes either side of the narrow neck. In earlier dynasties, people played a drinking game of pitching arrows into the tubes and neck of larger bronze and ceramic pots of this shape.

Bibliographic reference: Yorke Hardy, Sheila, Tung, Ju, Kuan, Chun, Kuang-tung & Glazed I-hsing Wares in the Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, London, University of London, Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, School of Oriental and African Studies, 1953

Pierson, Stacey, Illustrated catalogue of Ru, Guan, Jun, Guangdong and Yixing wares in the Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, London, University of London, Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, School of Oriental and African Studies, 1999