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Title: The exploration of strontium isotopic analysis applied to Chinese glazes : taking southern high fired glazes as examples
Author: Hongjiao, Ma
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 5231
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2014
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By the time this thesis is finished, I will have engaged in ancient Chinese ceramic studies for six years. I would not call six years a long time, but the six years (from 24 years old to 30 years old) are probably the best years of a person's life. Now when I look back over the six years and I am really glad I spent them this way. Because six years ago I was just a young man with some obscure interest about ancient Chinese ceramics, but now I am certain that doing research about ancient Chinese ceramic is going to be the career for the rest of my life. When I finish my masters course four years ago, this idea was still not so clear in my mind. I did decent research work in my masters project, but that work did not convince me that what I did could really help to further the understanding of ancient Chinese ceramic technology. Because there is always this doubt about scientific analysis of ancient ceramics in China: can it be as helpful as archaeological excavation and historical records in terms of providing information aboutthe details of ancient ceramic making technology? I had this doubt when I came to Nottingham. Professor Henderson introduced me to Sr isotopic analysis he had been engaging in to investigate ancient glasses. After a short period of familiarization of this method and its capability, I found it could be a very interesting method to use for my PhD project and more importantly it could solve the issue has haunted me since I was working on my masters project: how to identify the flux in ancient glaze recipes by scientific analysis. I always think that identifying or suggesting the recipe for ancient ceramic production is one of the major research objectives for the scientific study of ancient ceramics, especially when there is not much relevant information you can pick up from archaeological excavation and historical records, and this research objective is even more important than determining the provenance, which is always taken as the ultimate aim for scientific study of ancient ceramics. I made an attempt to suggest of the glaze recipe of Zhangzhou export blue-and-white in my masters project by the conventional method of combined contents of Phosphorus oxide (P 20 S) and Magnesium oxide (MgO). But that attempt did not turn out very well, because I did not think my EDXRF results for P20 S was good enough and I did not think the P20 S results from a lot of other studies were good enough. If the final result had been based on the comparison of those invalid data, it would have been inaccurate or even misleading. With the helps from Professor Henderson and Professor Evans I got the chance to apply Sr isotopic analysis to Chinese high fired glaze. By studying the Sr isotopic compositions of the glazes and the raw materials, a new method of identifying the flux raw material in ancient Chinese high fired glaze has been developed. Although this is not the only success of this thesis, I am exceptionally happy with it. Because not only does it help me get rid of the issue haunting me for a long time, but also makes me convinced that scientific analysis of ancient ceramics can really bring up some new information that we cannot obtain from other resources.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available