Archaic and Imperial China
Song / Liao Dynasty (AD 960 -1280)


Object :
Nº 963
Medium :
Dimensions :
Height: 36 cm (14.1") – Width: 25 cm (9.8")

Description :

Nice, large-sized flask made of sandstone covered with a thick white slip called ting. Ovoid shape typical of leather flasks, with an embossed outline resembling in a realistic way the sewing. Handle on the top of the flask attached to the narrow spout in order to receive a stopper made either of cork or wood. Good state of preservation overall. An ancient repair to fix the handle on and a very thin horizontal line on the body.

The Liao dynasty, placed between the Tang and the Song, actually came from the Khitan people, a non-Han population composed of 8 nomad tribes. They encompassed the Beijing area as well as Mongolia and Manchuria and had their own language with two scripts of their own. Once converted to Buddhism they adopted the name of Liao in order to present themselves to the Chinese people. The ceramic of that time remains unsurpassed for the purity of the design, the beauty of the colours of the slip, usually monochromatic, and the realism closely related to some habits of the nomad tradition.