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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

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basin

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    PDF.153

  • Description

    Ding porcelain basin, with copper-bound mouth rim. Creamy white. There is a carved and incised leaf scroll on the interior, and a lotus scroll on the exterior.

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 1086-1127
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Ware

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 129 millimetres
    • Diameter: 249 millimetres
  • Curator's comments

    Published PDF date : Northern Song 11thC-12thCRoom 95 label text:

    PDF 153

    Basin with incised flowers


    This basin is carved with a leaf pattern inside and with lotus plants outside. Craftsmen used sheet copper and occasionally gold or silver, cut to size and heated to fit the rims to hide the unglazed rims. Historical accounts suggest that dressing the rim with metal actually enhanced the status of the clay vessel.


    Stoneware with carved and incised decoration, transparent glaze and copper rim mount
    Ding ware定窯
    Quyang county, Hebei province 河北省, 曲陽縣
    Northern Song dynasty, about AD 1086–1127

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  • Bibliography

    • Medley 1975 Monochrome pl. 11 bibliographic details
    • Hobson 1934 p. 89, pl. LXXXVIII bibliographic details
    • Hobson, Rackham & King 1931 p.10, Fig.14. bibliographic details
    • Medley 1980 p.14, no.21 bibliographic details
  • Location

    G95/case9/sh1

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition notes

    Hobson, Rackham and King 1931 record in the W. C. Alexander Collection. PDF Card: From the W. C. Alexander Collection acquired in 1931, lot 39, Sotheby via Sparks £340.

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    PDF.153

Ding porcelain basin, with copper-bound mouth rim. Creamy white.  There is a carved and incised leaf scroll on the interior, and a lotus scroll on the exterior.

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Object reference number: RRC38571

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