Antique Chinese Mud Man with Pipe and Bamboo Gourd


This Chinese mud man figurine is 4" (4"-7" are the most popular export sizes, based on the convenience of shelving smaller items.) in height from his base to the tip of his hat. He has the characteristic holes in his eyes, nostrils and ears and "CHINA" incised on the base. The yellow, blue and green glazes are hallmarks of early mud men. Some of the glaze shows runs, which were common during the process. The color of the mud man's exposed skin is owing to the clay of the region in which he was made. He holds a gourd, which has an opening as would an actual gourd, and a pipe.

Condition: This mud man has condition issues. He has considerable crazing on the glazed areas. I've showed a close-up of some of the crazing in the ninth photo. The sleeves of his robe have chipping, as shown in the second and third photos. Please refer to the first photo to see the chipping on the mud man's feet as well as what looks like a re-attached thumb on the hand that is holding the pipe, although I am not certain. The fourth, sixth and seventh photos show the chipping on his hat. The eighth photo shows chipping at the base of the piece upon which he is seated. Please do ask to see more photos, if you need more as I'll be more than happy to oblige.

This site offers interesting information on mud men figurines:

I am estimating this figurine as being from the latter era of the Manchurian Qing Dynasty, possibly from the early 1900s. I don't believe this piece to be earlier than the late 1800s as "China" began being used in 1891 for export pieces. This piece was more than likely made for export because of the "China" mark.

Thank you for looking.


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