Five porcelain bowls in the shape of fish


British Museum

British Museum

Japan has always worked on a decimal system and even today, Japanese sets of dishes come in fives. A traditional Japanese meal consists of a number of small helpings of different foods usually served together on individual trays or small lacquered tables. Dishes and bowls are often chosen to suit the food. Fish is served raw or cooked in a number of different ways and fish-shaped bowls and dishes are very popular. Beautifully curled shapes occur for shellfish.The five bowls in this set are individually made and painted in underglaze blue.

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  • Title: Five porcelain bowls in the shape of fish
  • Date Created: 1750/1799
  • Physical Dimensions: Length: 11.80cm; Height: 2.00cm
  • External Link: British Museum collection online
  • Technique: glazed; underglazed
  • Registration number: 1997,0121.164.a-e
  • Production place: Made in Arita
  • Period/culture: Edo Period
  • Material: porcelain
  • Copyright: Photo: © Trustees of the British Museum
  • Acquisition: Donated by Shibata, Akihiko