Large porcelain charger decorated in underglaze blue with a map of Japan, as drawn in the Edo period. The map (Gyoji type) shows the main islands of Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu, divided into the 63 provinces. The names of the provinces are written in kanji. Here and there a name of a city (i.e. Edo) is added. The main islands of Japan are surrounded by several islands (names written partly or entirely in katakana) and real and imaginary countries, such as Choseon, the Ryukyus, the country of the small people and the country where women rule. The sea is indicated by stylized waves. Around the islands are stylized clouds and on top and bottom fly crane-like birds. The bottom, reverse, with 6-mark seal: Honcho Tenpo nensei. Rim decorated with meandering flowering vines. Five spur marks. Japan, Hizen, Arita kiln, 1830s-1840s or slightly later (but still Edo period).
Diameter 16 inches, H 2.25 inches (Diam. 40.6 cm, H 5.7 cm).
Very similar piece in the Kyushu Ceramic Museum.