Included in the list of the most prized items described as ‘first under heaven’ by the 12th/13th century Chinese author Taiping Laoren, together with the books of the Academy, wines of the Palace, inkstones of Duanxi, the peonies of Luoyang, the tea of Fujian, the brocades of Sichuan, and the porcelains of Dingzhou, the celadons of the Goryeo dynasty have been held in high regard by the Korean Imperial court and beyond since their creation. As in China, the quality of celadons vary widely and they would have figured prominently in many households besides those of the royal family and aristocratic court for whom the finest were reserved. Poets and scholars romanticized its distinctive color, referring to it as the ‘secret color’ (bi se) and comparing it to the hue of autumn skies and distant mountain peaks in its glimmering tones of bluish-green with a touch of gray.
Compare an incised meiping of similar profile formerly in the Ataka Collection, included in the exhibition Newly Discovered Goryeo Celadon and the Achievements of Underwater Archaeology in Korea, Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, 2015, cat. no. 151.
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