YiXing Teapots' Great Grandmother
  

In all the stories of the origin of YiXing teapots, only this teapot has it's undoubtable identity. It's the great grandmother of YiXing teapots.
High Handle YiXing teapot from Wu Jing tomb
  

This earliest of all YiXing teapot is dated back to 1533. It was excavated in NanJing from the Ming Dynasty eunuch (palace servant) Wu Jing's tomb. It is THE oldest solid evidence of YiXing teapots.

The Ming Dynasty was a dynasty manipulated by eunuchs. And in Chinese culture, mortuary objects were usually the deceased peoples' most loved objects. Such lead researchers to believe YiXing teapots had became significant during the Ming Dynasty.

This particular teapot is, however, not a YiXing teapot by strict definition. Firstly, it is not made of pure Zisha. Secondly, it's making process differs slightly form that of YiXing teapots'. Thirdly, this teapot was used for boiling instead of brewing Chinese tea.

Although this teapot is not `a 100% YiXing teapot, it marked the transition of Chinese tea from being boiled to being brewed (process completed during 1531 - 1595). It is indubitably the earliest piece of YiXing Zisha ware. It carries with it perhaps the most important artistic and archeological value for YiXing teapots.

Teapot is  now a collection of the NanJing Museum.

 

 
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