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Kundika: C.55-1984

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Object information


  • Chongbyong

Kundika with willow and waterfowl design. Stoneware, thrown, with parts attached, incised and celadon-glazed. This vessel has an ovoid body with a small spout on one side, and a long neck, with a flanged swelling in the centre. The lower part of the body contracts to a splayed footring, giving it a stable shape. The upper part of the long neck is cut into octagonal form, and has incised cloud motifs on each facet, while the projecting ring shows lotus petals and scrolling foliage. The lower part of the neck is decorated with flying cranes among clouds. A classic-scroll border and youi-heads are finely incised round the shoulder, and a key-fret border and further youi-heads round the foot. The body itself shows willow trees on one side and reeds on the other, with ducks and lotuses, flying cranes and geese delicately engraved be-tween. The glaze has a clear, pale blue-green colour with a fine gloss, and evenly covers the entire vessel; a fine crackle covers the whole surface, and near the foot the glaze has in places discoloured. Five quartzite spur-marks are visible on the base, just inside the footring.

Collection of Rev. Stanley T. Smith; sold at Sotheby's, London, 16th October 1951, Lot 28

Named entities

Legal notes

Given by Mr and Mrs G. St. G.M. Gompertz

Acquisition and important dates

  • Method of acquisition: Given
  • Dates: 1984




This type of kundika, which is modelled on bronze examples decorated with silver inlay, was very popular in the Koryo dynasty. Both shape and design are very similar to the metal counterparts. The kundika (Chongbyong) was used in Buddhist ceremonies as a container for water, which was filled in through the spout and sprinkled from the narrow mouth. Similar sherds were excavated at kiln no.7, Sadang-ri, Kangjin-gun, South Cholla province, and were produced in the mature period of Koryo celadon, in the first half of the twelfth century.

Place(s) associated

  • Kangjin-gun ⪼ South Cholla province ⪼ Korea

Measurements and weight

  • Height: 34.7 cm

Subjects depicted

Components of the work

  • Glaze composed of celadon glaze
  • Maximum measuring: Diameter by cm by 16
  • Foot measuring: Diameter by cm by 9
  • Decoration

Materials used in production

Techniques used in production

Associated department: Applied Arts

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

  • Accession number: C.55-1984
  • Primary reference Number: 16173
  • Old object number: 37
  • Box number: 37
  • Stable URI

Audit data

  • Created: Saturday 6 August 2011
  • Updated: Tuesday 23 February 2021
  • Last processed: Thursday 8 April 2021
  • Data source: Adlib

Associated institutions

How to cite this record

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2020) "Kundika" Web page available at: Accessed: 2021-05-13 08:32:19

To cite this record on Wikipedia you can use this code snippet:

{{cite web|url=|title=Kundika|author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2021-05-13 08:32:19|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

Machine readable data

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