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Chopsticks - Varieties and Origins, Part I

For people who didn’t grow up using them, chopsticks can be both fun and frustrating to use. When eating sushi, using chopsticks creates a more immersive, cultural dining experience. It can make a dinner out feel just a bit more special. On the other hand, if as a novice, you tackle a bowl of noodle soup with chopsticks, you may test your patience and end up resorting to using your soup spoon in creative ways. Nonetheless, chopsticks are used on daily basis by over a billion people worldwide. In this post we'll take a brief look at the origins and different varieties of chopsticks.  _____________________________________   Chopsticks are arguably the world’s oldest dining utensils. The basic idea of using two sticks...

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Chinese Celadon - History and Features

Note: This is our second post on celadon. To see the previous one click here.   Ceramic Reminiscent of Jade Like many other types of fine ceramicware, celadon originated in China, where it was prized for its jade-like appearance. Jade has been prized since the Stone Age in what is now China. The nephrite jade native to China was both beautiful and durable, however, it is evident that over time early Chinese cultures imbued the stone with spiritual properties too, further enhancing its value. Archaeologists have uncovered numerous grave goods made of jade from neolithic and ancient times. Several Han dynasty burials contained worked pieces of jade that were used to cover or plug the orifices of the deceased. Taking...

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What is Celadon?

Defining Celadon The term "celadon" is often used to describe a light green color, but it also denotes a class of ceramic ware characterized by its translucent glaze and soft hues of green and blue. There are varying theories for the etymology of the word "celadon" in European languages, but in most of the Far East it is known as 青瓷, which can be translated as "green porcelain."    General Characteristics of Celadon Technically, what defines a ceramic item as celadon is the glaze used. Traditionally celadon glazes have been applied mostly to porcelain and stoneware. This is still the case today, however, lesser ceramics can also be used. The key to the glaze is its iron content and how this...

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