Historical period(s)
Early Anyang period, Late Shang dynasty, ca. 1225-1175 BCE
Unglazed white pottery
H x W x D (overall): 33.3 x 30.3 x 28.3 cm (13 1/8 x 11 15/16 x 11 1/8 in)
China, Henan province, Anyang
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Ceramic, Vessel


Anyang period (ca. 1300 - ca. 1050 BCE), China, WWII-era provenance

To 1939
Tonying and Company, New York [1]

From 1939
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from Tonying and Company, New York [2]


[1] Curatorial Remark 1 in the object record.

[2] See note 1.

Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)

Tonying and Company established 1902


The rare Shang white pottery has been found in such small quantities, all in the vicinity of the late Shang capital at Anyang, that it may have been the product of a single specialized workshop.  The brittle ware, formed from pure white clay, was probably made for ceremonial and burial purposes.  The carved and stamped motifs on white pottery resemble bronze vessel decor but developed as an independent  sequence.

Published References
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Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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