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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
February 05, 2023, 09:36:49 pm
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Two Chinese Inkstones

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Author Topic: Two Chinese Inkstones  (Read 572 times)
samsonlzj
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« on: August 22, 2020, 11:20:24 pm »

Dear all,

Iíd like to share these two inkstones which Iíve long wanted to but never quite got the chance to get some decent photos done probably because Iíve been too focused on snuff bottles! Roll Eyes

These two are among the first Chinese antiques I acquired, before I found an interest in snuff bottles. Got both from Japan. Iíve heard that as far as Chinese inkstones are concerned, many treasures had found their way to Japan during the Republic period (early 20th century) due to circumstances in China at the time. Iíve hoped these two were among them.

Years ago I asked a Chinese expert in miscellaneous Chinese antiquities who used to work for the Beijing Palace Museum as an associate researcher for her opinion on the slightly reddish one (the color is due to it being made of silt from the Yellow River, thus its name Chengni 澄泥硯 (being the kind of clay itís known as) inkstone). I was told that despite the inscription of one of Qianlong Emperorís poems is found on the top side of the inkstone, itís circa early 19th century/Jiaqing (as we would sometimes see happening with snuff bottles) and its carving is quite well executed.

As for the goose Duan inkstone, Iím not sure really... Both inkstones show sign of wear and long use. Never came across anymore inkstones in the same style... Itís been really difficult to get an expert opinion on inkstones...

Best,
Samson


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« Last Edit: August 23, 2020, 07:18:16 am by samsonlzj » Report Spam   Logged

Samson - a young new collector desiring knowledge

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Wattana
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« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2020, 12:12:43 am »

Hi Samson,

Thanks for sharing!
The goose really appeals to me, although I think the quality of the 'Chengni' inkstone is probably better.
Both would sit very nicely on my desk at home!

Best,
Tom
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Fiveroosters aka clayandbrush
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« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2020, 03:29:02 am »

Dear Samson,
Very nice inkstones! Congratulations.
I am not expert on inkstones (or more properly ink grinding stones) but to my eyes the goose shaped one has a Japanese feeling.
AS for the second one, I do not understand what has been told to you by the expert.
Has it been carved out from a stone or is it a ceramic ink grinder?
Talking of clay, sand, etc. it means that it is a ceramic piece.
If instead it is a duan stone, then for what I know those changes in color tone are highly desirable.
I have a Duan inkstone myself and a few porcelain ink grinder.
Kind regards
Giovanni
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« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2020, 04:14:08 am »

I am not an expert at all with inkstone, but watch them at auction all the time.

These are two extra nice stones Samson !

Wish I could help you with learning more about them, and look forward to reading more posts about these in addition to what Giovannie has shared...

Big congratulations !
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samsonlzj
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« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2020, 05:19:38 am »

Thanks guys! Inkstones are indeed an area where research is particularly challenging as there doesnít seem to be any international enthusiast community on the internet like our forum for snuff bottles. Nonetheless itís great to see your positive comments about my inkstones!

Giovanni, the second inkstone is not made from duan stone according to my understanding. Itís not even carved from a stone. Itís a form of pottery made from the Chengni clay which is a silt extracted from the Yellow River. Such type of inkstones are among the so-called ďBig Four of InkstonesĒ together with Duan inkstones and another two types which name I canít quite remember.

Best,
Samson
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samsonlzj
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« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2020, 05:55:37 am »

The goose really appeals to me

Me too Tom, Iíve been getting goose for dinner everyday... Cheesy Cool

Best,
Samson
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« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2020, 06:59:48 am »

The goose really appeals to me

Me too Tom, Iíve been getting goose for dinner everyday... Cheesy Cool

Best,
Samson


Just be careful which one you're biting into.

Best,
Tom
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« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2020, 06:37:52 am »

Samson,

Congratulations for having these two pieces ! And thanks for sharing with us. Both are equally eye-pleasing, but I have a bias for the goose ( like Tom, either of them will sit well on my table too ! ).

I like the calligraphies especially the long Qianlong poem on the Duan one. They are neatly packed within the space. I just feel funny to see the words above the two duck feet which come out of no where 😁😁

Inn Bok
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« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2020, 10:43:39 am »

Dear Samson,

     You know my affinity for 'Goose'! I doubt anyone on the Forum, certainly those in East Asia, can doubt it, anyway!
I love both, but must admit that I did not realise that there were 'Inkstones / Ink Grinding Stones' that were not from Duanstone.
Both are beautiful. Congratulations.
Best,
Joey
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 10:14:40 am by Joey » Report Spam   Logged

Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2020, 12:03:09 pm »

Hi Samson,

Thank you for sharing your beautiful inkstones. The goose is gorgeous, but I'm more drawn to the Chengni piece. The two remaining "Four Famous Inkstones" are She, a variety of black slate from Shexian in Ainhui & Jiangxi Provinces, and Taohe or Tao inkstones made from crystalline stones from the bottom of the Tao river in South Gansu, mostly in shades of green that mimic jade and are quite rare.

I'm also surprised that there isn't an inkstones collectors group. I love the diversity available. The ink sticks themselves are often quite exquisite and collected as well.

Best wishes,

Stacey
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samsonlzj
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« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2020, 06:27:56 am »

Dear all,

Thank you! Smiley

Best,
Samson

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Samson - a young new collector desiring knowledge
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