Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Early Ming Wares of Chingtechen

Early Ming Wares of Chingtechen by A.D. Brankston (1938).

One of the things I don’t want to do with this blog is to just write about rare and expensive books and to be honest, I don’t really find many books that fall into this category.  This book was a rare and pleasant surprise.  Chinese ceramics, as with many subjects, is not one of my specialties (I bet you're surprised).  Despite a lack of knowledge in this subject, there was something about this book that sparked my interest.  Possibly it was the year it was published (1938, so it is definitely an antique…could be good or bad) or the fact that it clearly states that there were only 650 copies of the book published (rare) but the primary reason it caught my attention is that it appears to be quite technical and detailed but still aimed at the general reader.  I always imagine if you are a serious collector you want the detail not the gloss.  The book was published in Peking by a publisher with the very un Chinese name of Henri Vetch… I don’t know if this makes it more reputable or not, but it certainly makes it interesting.

The book is worn and the dust jacket is in poor condition with rips and chips (just like an old vase) and there are some sticky tape repairs.  There is some foxing throughout the book and creasing to the spine… and wear etc etc.  ABE has this book listed at US$200 (approx), there are some later reprints listed at cheaper prices but this is one of the original 650 original copies.  So the intestinal disquiet was correct and the book has an on line value, it now remains to be seen whether this can be transferred to a real value.


  1. Perhaps you should have that intestinal disquiet looked at. Congrats on the interesting find though!

  2. Hi there,
    Many years ago, i was in hospital with a fairly serious condition and the doctor indicated that he had intestinal disquiet about my condition... my thoughts and body not being %100 at the time, i had to ask what was intestinal disquiet... the answer was so glaringly obvious that my embarrassment has etched this moment and phrase into my mind and only now after many years have i been able to use the term myself. Thank you anonymous for noticing.

  3. if you still have this book and willing to pass on, maybe we can talk about it. Let me know. Thanks. gaowei@gmail.com

    1. Hi there,
      The book sold not long after this blog posting. From memory it was posted to an address in China. I do still have some copies of "Transactions of the Oriental Ceramic Society" if you are interested in nearly new condition.
      All the best