This article was checked by Charlie on Feb 24,2006
Jingdezhen, formerly known as Ching Teh Chen is the ceramics capital of China.
Known as Xinping or Changnanzhen throughout history it is situated in the north-eastern part of Jiangxi province in a small basin area rich in fine kaolin. Surrounded by mountains which keep it supplied with firewood for their rich trees. People in this province began producing ceramics 1800 years ago under the Eastern Han Dynasty in the Jingde Period (1004-1007). Emperor Zhenzong of the Song decreed that Changnanzhen should produce the porcelain used by the imperial court. Each item has the inscription ¡¯¡¯Made in the Reign of Jingde¡¯¡¯. From this time on people began to call all chinaware bearing such inscriptions ¡¯¡¯porcelain of Jingdezhen¡¯¡¯.
The ceramic industry experienced further development at Jingdezhen during the Ming and Quin dynasties starting in the 14th century and running through till the 19th century. Government kilns where set up to cater exclusively to the need of the imperial house once skills became perfected and the general quality improved.
Jingdezhen, the ancient ceramics metropolis, has been regenerated with new vigour since the founding of New China. It now boasts a ceramic research institute, a ceramic museum, no less then five kaolin quarries, fifteen porcelain factories, two porcelain machinery plants, one porcelain chemical plant, two refractory material factories and dozens of porcelain processing works.
The leading centre of the porcelain industry, Jingdezhen, has been placed under state protection as an important historical city with 133 ancient buildings and cultural sites. It is a tourist town attracting large numbers of visitors from both home and abroad.