Basin on tall foot (offering dish)

  • Stoneware with white glaze
  • 16 x 27.5 cm
  • Sawankhalok ware
  • late 15th-16th century, Ayutthaya period
  • Origin: Sawankhalok kilns, Si Satchanalai, Sukhothai province, North-central Thailand
  • Gift of Osborne and Gratia Hauge, and Victor and Takako Hauge
  • S2005.281


Stem bowl (Thai "phan") with rounded body, flared mouthrim, splayed pedestal foot with concave base. Several cracks and repairs on the lower body. Black circular scar from tubular kiln support on base.
Clay: light grey stoneware.
Glaze: white, opaque, low gloss, crazed where thick; inside of the foot and base unglazed.
Decoration: incised rings below exterior rim.

Curatorial Remarks

1. (Candy Chan, Research Assistant, May 19, 2003) Opaque white glazed wares were found in the Singtai Shipwreck (+/- 1550 AD), which was discovered off the northeast coast of peninsular Malaysia in April 2001. The other Thai wares on the ship were Si Satchanalai and Sukhothai underglazed iron wares as well as Singburi storage jars (Brown and Sjostrand 2001, 31 and 57).

A white glazed pedestal dish (also called 'phan') of this type is in the collection of the Art Gallery of South Australia and is dated 13th to 16th century (Richards 1995, 126, pl. 76).

Brown speculates the opaque white glazed-wares appeared in the Si Satchanalai kilns from the 15th century and lasted till the 1550s when the kilns were closed after the Burmese invasion. This glaze was never employed on Sukhothai wares. The appearance of the white wares in Sukhothai kilns was created by applying white slip under clear glaze. The white glaze of Si Satchanalai has a high calcium content owed to the addition of the ingredient known in Thai as 'horse-tooth stone,' which can be substituted by using crushed sea shells or animal bone (Brown 1993, 45–51).

Brown, Roxanna M., and Sten Sjostrand. 2001. Maritime Archaeology and Shipwreck Ceramics in Malaysia. Kuala Lumpur: Department of Museums and Antiques.

Richards, Dick. 1995. South-East Asian Ceramics: Thai, Vietnamese and Khmer: From the Collection of the Art Gallery of South Australia. Kuala Lumpur: Oxford University Press.

Brown, Roxanna  M. 1993. "Sawankhalok White-glazed Ware". Pp. 45–51 in Chinese and South-East Asian White Ware Found in the Philippines. Singapore, Oxford and New York: The Oriental Ceramic Society of the Philippines, The National Museum of the Philippines and Oxford University Press.

2. (Louise Cort, 14 January 2007) Don Hein associated white-glazed wares in a generally Ming Chinese style with the wares made at Si Satchanalai that he terms LASW (Late Stoneware) (Hein 2001, figs. 43–44). Although Hein is cautious about dating, he suggests that LASW dates to 15th–16th century (Hein 1999, 150).

Changed Date from 14th–mid 16th century to 15th–16th century.

Hein, Don. 2001. "The Sawankhalok Ceramic Industry: from Domestic Enterprise to Regional Entrepreneur". PhD Thesis, Department of Science and Technology, Deakin University, Melbourne.

Hein, Don. 1999. "The First Underglaze Painted Decoration at Sawankhalok: identification of a key influence? (Diqu shouci chuxian de youxia caihui: Taigou taoci tazhan shi shang wailai yingxiang de zhongyao xiansuo?)." Guoli Taiwan daxue Meishushi yanjiu jikan (The Taida Journal of Art History) 7: 137–158.

3. (Louise Cort, 17 February 2008) From shipwreck evidence, Roxanna Brown finds that opaque white glaze appears on objects recovered from wrecks that she dates to the early 16th century, circa 1500–1520. They appear at the same time as the so-called brown and white wares, decorated with iron brown and opaque white glazes (Brown 2004, 74).

Changed Date from 15th–mid 16th century to Late 15th–16th century.

Brown, Roxanna Maude. 2004. "The Ming Gap and Shipwreck Ceramics in Southeast Asia". Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Art History, University of California, Los Angeles.

4. (Louise Cort, 29 May 2008) Don Hein, in Washington to present the Pope Memorial Lecture, observed that the small diameter of the scar left by the tubular support confirmed a date in the LASW (Late Stoneware) phase of production at the Sawankhalok kilns. The pressure of the firing support on the base of the vessel led to deformation of the bowl's bottom during firing. Only in LASW kilns did the firing temperature rise as high as 1300 degrees Centigrade.

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