A technical comparison of three Chinese white porcelains: Ding, Shufu, and Dehua

User menu

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Wu, Juan; Hou, Tiejun; Zhang, Maolin; Li, Qijiang; Wu, Junming; Li, Jiazhi; Deng, Zequn;


Studies in Conservation, Volume 59, Number 5, p.341-349 (2014)


The invention and maturation of white porcelain is of monumental significance in the history of Chinese ceramics, with three kilns being the most representative: Ding, Shufu, and Dehua. This article analyzes the chemical composition, microstructure, and technical processes of 32 representative samples of the above-mentioned white porcelains and explores their coloration mechanisms by means of energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometry, electron microprobe, thermal dilatometry, and colorimetry. The results indicate that apparent differences among chemical composition and microstructure of the body and glaze impacted the coloration features of the three Chinese white porcelains. These results shed light on the history of Chinese ceramic technology, and have implications for interpretations of other white porcelain traditions.