Tek Sing ceramics showcase a rich history in porcelain

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A pieces of blue-and-white porcelain found on the shipwreck of the Tek Sing are among the 195 pieces donated to the National Museum of China on Aug 13. [Photo by Jiang Dong/China Daily]

On Aug. 13, the National Museum of China received a donation of 195 pieces of ancient porcelain recovered from the wreck of the Tek Sing, an important record of the prosperity of China's Maritime Silk Road.

In 1822, the Tek Sing, loaded with silk and porcelain from China, sank in waters off the coast of Indonesia. The sunken ship was salvaged by a commercial team in 1999, and the artifacts were then auctioned off.

Zheng Changlai, chair of Waterside Culture Group, a private Chinese firm which donated the relics to the museum, said that the ship's cargo of blue-and-white porcelain was manufactured at the Dehua kilns in East China's Fujian province during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). In 2018, the company purchased more than 100,000 pieces from a British company.

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