Archeologists have unearthed a large number of pieces of celadon pottery and specimens of the kiln craftsmen's tools in a porcelain kiln in Linchuan District, Jiangxi Province, dating back to Tang Dynasty (618-907).
The oblong-arc shaped kiln, 23 meters long and 2.24 meters wide, is nestled against a hill and runs east to west. The wall of the kiln is burned charcoal as thick as 5 centimeters.
This kind of kiln is also called a "dragon kiln" in Chinese for its particular shape. With the top closed, it was especially good for the making of celadon pottery and large porcelain items.
All the porcelain pieces unearthed are containers, tableware, lamps and sculpture in various shapes. More than half are containers, including jars, pots and kettles.
Among the tableware are bowls and plates. There are two kinds of holders for the lamps, one is column-shaped, and the other is flat. The lamp holders are of dark gray clay with yellow and bright-colored glazes.
The single piece of sculpture discovered is a handmade duck, also of dark gray clay with its head missing. It is a product of very fine manual work with a trace of dots in different colors on the back.
Surnames and numbers were inscribed on the worker's tools. The different surnames probably mean that the kiln was a joint venture.
Experts say the numbers may indicate the kiln-produced porcelain of different sizes.
The discovery will provide archeologists with important clues on the porcelain industry during the late Tang and Five Dynasties periods in the province.
(Xinhua News Agency September 25, 2002)