Enamelled bronze wares, Minh Mang reign (1820-1841)
: 14/02/2019 04:29:41
Phap lam (also called phap lang) is a product of bronze base, enamelled outside, originated in Central Asia, introduced into China in the 13th century.

Depending on the method of making the base and enamelling, there were four types of enamelled bronze wares: Khap ti phap lang (Cloisonnes with compartments), Hoa phap lang (Painted enamels), Tam thai phap lang (Carved cloisonnes) or Thau minh phap lang (Cloisonnes with transparent glaze). One of the famous Chinese centers of enamelled bronze wares at the time was Canton. From Canton, the items made by the technique of painted enamels were brought everywhere by the Chinese merchant ships and then imported into Vietnam, latest at the 18th century.

Incense burner for Hue royal ceremony

Marked 明 命 年 造 (Made during Minh Mang reign)

Betel box

Marked 明 命 年 造 (Made during Minh Mang reign)

At the beginning of the Nguyen dynasty, emperor Gia Long (1802-1820) hired Chinese artisans to Vietnam to produce enamelled bronze wares, and at the same time train the workmen in the royal workshop. In 1827, the Unit of enamelled bronze wares of the Nguyen dynasty was established, based in Hue, Ai Tu (Quang Tri province) and Dong Hoi (Quang Binh province).

From its inception until recession at the end of the 19th century, the Unit of enamelled bronze wares had produced many products for the decoration of the royal palaces in Hue, the royal ritual and daily activities. Along with the products made in the country, the emperors also commissioned enamelled bronze wares from China with the specific requirements on design and decorative pattern, creating a type of Hue enamelled bronze wares featured in color, design and shape, etc. many of which have been still preserved at Hue Royal Antiquities Museum.

Long-stemmed tureen for Hue royal ceremony Stemmed tray with lid, ritual item for Hue royal ceremony
 
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