A Rare Japanese "Betsukafu" Satsuma Pottery Tea Pot. Edo Period.
Ht. 3 1/8 in.(8 cms) Max. diameter across handle and spout 7 ins. (17.8 cms)
Betsukafu means tortoiseshell which this glaze is said to resemble. This is one of the rarest types of Edo Period Satsuma pottery as opposed to the later highly decorated wares. An internet search only revealed one example, a bowl in the New York Metropolitan Museum. The form is based on a section of bamboo and the relief decoration is of bamboos. The body is the typical white Satsuma clay, the flat base was washed with iron oxide before firing to give a darker colour. The condition is very good although its cover is missing. There are a few minor chips to the glaze but no cracks and no repairs. Although we have described it as a tea pot it is quite possible that it was a wine pot. It dates from ca. 1800.
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