Ding wares

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  • Chinese: 定 (dìng)

Ding wares are a style or type of Chinese earthenware pottery, dating back to at least the Tang Dynasty.

In the Tang through Yuan Dynasties, from the 8th century to the 14th, kilns in Quyang County, Hebei province were the main center of Ding ware production. In the 10th century, most Ding wares were simple stonewares, made in shapes such as flowers, and left undecorated. By the 11th century, however, potters began incising designs; those operating within the territory of the Jurchen Jin Dynasty often impressed their designs into the clay. Reusable intaglio molds and stepped firing-boxes also came into use around this time, allowing production faster, and on a larger scale.

Ding wares were typically fired upside down, leaving the rims (rather than the bases, as is typical in many other ceramics styles) unglazed. Sheets of copper, or other materials, were often used to cover over this unglazed area.

Potters in the Ming and Qing Dynasties, and into the 20th century, copied the style and produced new Ding wares, both at Jingdezhen, and in other kiln sites in southern China.