Wine Vessel- Chinese or from where

Started by Lee Seng Kong, Jun 29, 2017, 11:57:51

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Lee Seng Kong


Attached are 2 photos of Wine vessel  with 4 spouts and one handle which is longer than the spout. Dark Brown Dripping Pigmentation with Deep Shiny Glaze.

Is it  Chinese  or Anamese Temuku ware and am I correct to call it a vessel for wine ?



Not sure where this is from, but Chinese porcelain has vessels with up to five tubes (correction: just saw one with six tubes). Those that I have seen were mostly from the Qing dynasty, I think. I believe they were copying a much earlier shape, perhaps Song or even earlier.  But, no idea what this was used for. The bottom shape and clay color looks similar to some Chinese bases made in the Song dynasty.

Lee Seng Kong

Thanks Peter,

According to another collector friend, it is supposed to be a wine decanter, used to be shared by different drinkers ......each drinker will use one of the spout.....but then again, when one passed the decanter around....who can identify which was the spout he drank from previously.......especially when one get drunk.......perhaps it is just a grand father's tale.

Few years back, I filled it with water, and when the decanter was poured, the water flowed out from the lowest spout of the decanter......whilst water did not flow out from the other spout.

I must try this action again to see how much I have to  tilt the decanter before water flows out from the other spout.....and report here  accordingly


Are all tubes connected straight into the vessel? Chinese ceramics are sometimes strange contraptions. I have seen a teapot without a spout. The interior had a construction to let the tea flow out from the bottom (!).
Anyway, if you do an image search with:  ???  "npm" , you will find a few examples, but of five-tubed vessels of this type.  It seems that those with only five tubes are more common. The 'npm' in quotation marks ensures that most results are from the National Palace Museums (npm) website, for better reliability of the information. There are scores of copies of such items out there.

Lee Seng Kong

Hi Peter,

As adviced, I searched  the NPM web-site but so far,...........none the wiser. .....will try harder.

The four spouts are connected straight into the where water inside can flow out.

As for the 5th "spout" , water cannot flow out....hence I thought it may be a handle.

Kindly see attached photo of the decanter placed under  a running tap demonstrating the aforementioned.

Also, on the neck, there are two incised dragons.

The 2nd photo shows one of the 2 dragon.

Do you think it is likely to be a copy.


It seems to have some age, but generally said monochrome wares are more difficult to date. You will have to be patient and wait, until you find something similar. The NPM link is only to show you how similar ones look. It is unlikely they have one like yours. The base of their collection is the former imperial ceramics collection, and some added later. You will probably not find common items that the general population used.