The Ming Gap and Shipwreck Ceramics in Southeast Asia

72
Towards a Chronology of Thai Trade Ware
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Shipwrecks throughout Southeast Asia and the precious cargoes they contain represent invaluable information for the study of international trade networks. In this book the late Dr. Roxanna M. Brown traces the developments and fluctuations of the hitherto little-studied international ceramic trade between China and Southeast Asia in particular the 14th-15th centuries, a period known as the ‘Ming Gap’ when export of Chinese ceramics was banned by the Ming Dynasty. As a result for over a century Southeast Asian ceramics became the dominant trade ware throughout the region. Analysing over 120 shipwrecks, the author for the first time proposes a chronology of ceramic production and discusses issues such as the relationship between Sukhothai and Sawankhalok kilns, the discovery of exported Burmese celadon wares and the location of Vietnamese production sites. The author, Dr Roxanna M. Brown, who died in 2008, was the founding director of the Southeast Asian Ceramics Museum, Bangkok University and a world expert in Southeast Asia ceramics.