Celadon Incense Burner with Girin-Shaped Lid

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Celadon Incense Burner with Girin-Shaped Lid


This is a celadon incense burner with a height of 20 centimeters (7.9 inches), which was made in the 12th-century Goryeo Period. It consists of a pot for burning incense and a lid that features a seated girin, an imaginary animal with a deer’s body, a cow’s tail and a horse’s hooves and mane.

The pot widens on the outside and is supported by the animal’s three legs. Its body features clouds. In the middle of the lid, a girin with its head turned is carved with lightning engraved on it.

There is a horn on the head of the girin, but it is broken, and the back of its neck is expressed with curvy lines. Its eye is drawn with black ink.

The subdued jade green gloss makes the whole incense burner much more graceful. The smoke from the incense is meant to exude through the girin’s open mouth.

In the 12th century, when celadon pieces were in their heyday, there were a lot of hieroglyphic celadon pieces made in the shape of auspicious animals and plants like this one.

Name: Celadon Incense Burner with Girin-Shaped Lid

Period: Goryeo Period

Location: Seongbuk District, Seoul

Status: National Treasures No. 65
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