báidūnzi (白墩子) – ‘little white bricks’ or china stone

bǎzhuāng (把裝) – kiln master

() – the Chinese term for all high-fire clays; there is no separate word for stoneware in Chinese; ci refers to all high-firing ceramics between 1200-1300ºC

dǒucǎi (斗彩) – ‘joined colours’ or colored enamels painted within underglaze blue outlines, found beginning in the Ming Dynasty; those from the Chenghua period (1465-1487) are considered the best with jewel-like reds, greens and yellows contrasting against the pure white porcelain. (best example: those famous ‘chicken cups’ that sell for $$$$$)

fǎnggǔcí (仿古瓷) – replicas of historic (antique) porcelain / fakes

fěncǎi (粉彩) – famille rose, Qing Dynasty and later

gāozúbēi (高足杯) – stem cup

guàn (罆) – jar or pot

(钴) – cobalt

gǔtǔ kuàng (钴土矿) – cobalt (as a mineral deposit), the ore cobalt

huíqīng(回青) ‘Mohammedan blue’ (foreign cobalt/’tribute’)

kāolin (高lin) white clays that are naturally low in iron oxides and fluxes

mǎnchíjiāo (满池娇) = “a pond full of beauty”, a popular design on Yuan B&W (ducks in a pond w/ lotus), inspired by a poem by Ke Jiusi (柯九思)

pán (盘) – dish

petunse (from the Chinese báidūnzi 白墩子), the small white bricks of porcelain clay prepared for potters’ use, a synonym for ‘china stone’

píng (瓶) – bottle, vase, flask

qīngbai (青白) – a thin-bodied porcelain celadon ware with icy-blue glazes, also known as yingqing, popular in S. China during the Song and Yuan dynasties (renowned for its jade-like quality), the bluish tinge of qingbai being produced by the concurrence in the glaze of minute quantities of iron oxide (a metallic oxide able to survive the high temperatures of porcelain firing). The same phenomenon (minute amounts of iron oxide) is responsible for the slight orangish cast of some Ding pieces.

qìpào (气泡) – the ‘body bubbles ‘created by gasses dissolved in the body or in a glaze

qīnghuā (青花) – blue-and-white

qīnghuācí (青花瓷) – blue-and-white porcelain

shūfǔ (樞府) – ‘imperial palace’, or ‘privy council’ made-for-the-court wares, a special egg-white colour ware made during the Yuan in JDZ by private potters who, when not needed, could make commercial wares

táo (陶) – the Chinese term for what we know as ‘earthenware’, a porous, often reddish-in-colour ceramic fired between 800- 1100ºC

wǎn (碗) – bowl

wǔcǎi (五彩) – ‘five-colour’, a type of overglaze decoration, first appearing in the Xuande reign (Ming)

xiábō (㘡钵) – boxes made of refractory clay to protect wares from direct contact with kiln flames during firing, a type of saggar

yáo (窑) – kiln

yī zuò ér lǐ sān shàngyóu (一作二理三上油)3 key positions in a ceramic workshop: ‘1st throwing, 2nd trimming, 3rdglazing’

yòu (釉) – glaze

yòuguo (釉果) – the special type of china stone combined with ash used as glazes in JDZ, sometimes referred to as ‘glaze stone’, porcelain stone that is less weathered, light green in colour, hard and brittle but not as heat-resistant as regular porcelain stone, used only in medium to low-grade glazes

yòutáo (釉陶) – glazed pottery

yùhúchūnpíng (玉壶 春瓶) – Yuhu vase named after a famous ancient wine, a vase with a flaring mouth, waisted neck, pear-shaped belly and a footring, found esp. in Song/Yuan dynasties

Zhìzhèng xíngqì (至正 型器 ) – Because the ‘David vases’ in the British Museum are dated to the 11th year of the Zhizheng rule (=1351), vases of a similar type (B&W with 8 bands of designs such as a dragon-among clouds, overlapping plaintain leaves, a lotus scroll, chrysanthemum scroll around the neck, elephant-head handles, etc.) are referred to as ‘Zhìzhèng-type vessels’

Types of kilns:

Chicken-coop kiln (jī lóng yáo) 鸡笼窑

Dragon kiln (lóng yáo) 笼窑

Egg-shaped kiln (dànxíng yáo 蛋形窑 or zhen yáo)

In Chinese, this Yuan Dynasty dish in a Shanghai Museum would be described as: ‘A foliate-rim dish with underglaze blue design of a banana plant, rocks, melons and fruit’: Qīnghuā jiāo shí guā guǒ wénlíng kǒu pán [青花蕉石瓜果纹菱口盘]