Ancient Chinese Kilns

Ancient Chinese Kilns or kiln sites were distributed over vast areas of China.
The following list shows only over 140 ancient kilns according to the province they are located in. This is only a small part. The mentioned kilns include so-called kiln systems(*), but not  their individual kiln sites. Some kiln systems are known to have included dozens, some even hundreds of individual kiln sites, respectively. Some were spread over very large areas.
The main kiln would usually be the kiln whose products were well-known, and other kilns in the vicinity would be producing the same or similar wares.


In general, ancient Chinese kilns would be established in locations conforming to the following requirements:
1. Easy access to a clay mining site
2. Located in a wooded area, where firewood for the kilns could be obtained easily
3. Easy transport access (i.e., near a waterway, for transport by boat)

  • Kiln names in parantheses are secondary or alternative site names for the preceding kiln.
  • Kiln sites in bold are the more famous, mainstream kilns. 

ProvinceKiln name
AnhuiFanchang, Huainan, Qiuzhou, Shouzhou, Sizhou, Suzhou, Xiao (Xiaoxian)
FujianAnxi, Chongan, Dehua, Fuqing, Guangze, Jian (Jianyang), Lianjiang, Minqing, Nanan, Futian, Pucheng, Quanzhou, Chongan, Tongan, Xianyou
GansuAnkou, Huating, Lanzhou
GuangdongChaoan, Chaozhou, Gaopi, Guang, Huiyang, Shiwan, Xicun
GuangxiRongxian, Tengxian, Yanguan (Xingan), Yongfu
HebeiCizhou (Cixian), Ding, Jiabicun, Jingxing, Quyang, Xing
HenanAnyang, Bacun, Baofeng, Bianjingguan, Chai, Dangyangyu (Xiuwu), Dengfeng (Quhe), Deng (Neixiang), Dong, Hebi, Huangye (Gongxian), Jiaxian, Jun, Linru, Lushan (Duandian), Mixian (Xiguan), Ru, Xinan, Yiyang
HubeiHusi
HunanChangsha (Tongguan), Liling, Xiangyang, Yuezhou (Xiangyin)
JiangsuJunshan (Nanshan), Yixing
JiangxiBaihu, Baishe, Cuigong, Hongzhou (Fengcheng), Hugong, Hutian, Huo, Jizhou (Yonghe), Jingdezhen, Lang, Leping, Baishe (Nanfeng), Nian, Qilizhen (Ganzhou), Shufu, Tang, Tao, Xiong, Yutu, Yuchang (Yuqichang), Zang, Zhou, Yangmeiting (Shengmeiting), Zhen
ShandongZibo
ShanxiChangzhi (Bayi), Datong, Huairen, Hunyuan, Huoxian, Jiaocheng, Jiexiu, Peng, Pingding, Puzhou, Yangcheng, Yuxian, Yuci
ShaanxiXunyi (Xunyi), Zhou
SichuanDayi, Guangyuan, Liulichang (Huayang), Pengxian, Qingyanggong (Chengdu), Qiong, Xiba
YunnanYuxi, Jianshui
ZhejiangCixi, Deqing (De), Dongyang, Ge, Huangyan, Jiangshan, Lishui, Linhai, Longquan (Di), Ningbo, Ou (Dongou), Shangyu, Shaoxing (Fusheng), Taishun, Tiedian, Wenzhou, Wuxing, Wuyi, Wuzhou, Xishan, Xiangshan, Xiaoshan, Xiuneisiguan (Nansongguan), Yinxian, Yuhang, Yue (Mise)
BeijingLongquanwu
NeimengGangwa (Chifeng), Liaoshangjing, Lindong

資料來源:維基百科

Note:
Among the ancient Chinese kilns the Yue kiln was the first official or imperial kiln. (Five Dynasties period and Tang dynasty)


Chinese kiln types

Dragon kiln (aka snake kiln): This type of ancient Chinese kiln is longitudinal and is located on a slope, climbing upward like a dragon or snake (hence its name). During firing the heat would rise from the lower to the upper end through the the kiln. Firing material can be added from many openings along its sides.
Example of a "live" dragon kiln in Yixing.
The protrusions on the left and right side of the 'ribs' are the firing holes. Other kiln types had often only one opening for firing.
Dragon kilns usually had a length of 40-60m, but the longest known is over 90m. Usually they were positioned on a slope.

Great egg-shaped kiln: The great kiln at Jingdezhen had a chamber about nine meters long and four meters high. It was egg shaped with the door at the smaller end.

Muffle kiln: Small kilns that could be placed anywhere on the ground, for firing larger quantities a number of such small kilns would have been in operation at the same time.


Explanation:
* Kiln systems were often spread over vast areas, often over several provinces of China. A kiln system consisted of one or more main (or central) kilns producing a certain type of wares, and often many more individual kilns located farther away, also producing similar items, but not necessarily as their only product.

In the Jun kiln system, for example, between one and two hundred individual kilns have been identified as main or central kilns. However, the whole Jun kiln system, including the peripheral kilns, was spread from Inner Mongolia south to the Yangtse river.

** Jingdezhen
The town of Jingdezhen (still active with pottery today) at the height of its production had at least several hundred kilns, some report over a thousand, and was also the location of the official (imperial) kiln during the Ming and Qing dynasties.






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Chinese Kilns (in Chinese)