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Jar with four lugs

Tea-leaf storage jar (chatsubo)
Historical period(s)
Yuan or Ming dynasty, 14th-mid 15th century
Stoneware with iron glaze
37.3 x 35.1 cm
China, probably Guangdong province
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
Beginning in the ninth century, China sent large numbers of storage jars to destinations along trading routes to Korea, Japan, Southeast Asia, and South Asia. The jars were made at kilns in the coastal provinces of Zhejiang, Fujian, or Guangdong, close to major port cities. Presumably most jars served as containers for commercial goods. Even after the Chinese jars were empty, they were highly valued. The uses to which they were put depended on the culture that received them. This jar reached Japan, where Chinese jars stored tea leaves used in the Japanese tea ceremony, chanoyu.

To 1900
Yamanaka & Company, New York, NY, to 1900 [1]

From 1900 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), given by Yamanaka & Company in December 1900 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]


[1] See Object file.

[2] Curatorial Remarks, from an exhibition label, September 1983: Freer received this jar as a gift for Christmas, 1900, from the Japanese firm of Yamanaka and Company, one major source of the East Asian ceramics that he had collected over the preceding decade.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Former owner
C.L. Freer source: Yamanaka and Co. , New York
On View Location
Currently not on view
Ceramic, Vessel
China, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644), stoneware, tea, Yuan dynasty (1279 - 1368)
Collection(s) Area
Chinese Art
Web Resource(s)
Google Cultural Institute

Rights Statement
Copyright with museum

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