Lime pot



12th-15th century (Trân dynasty)

H : 12 cm



This monochrome beige pot, enhanced by fine brown cracks, is emblematic of the productions of the period. The base, unlike the rest of the piece, has not been covered and has a chocolate colour, creating a subtle contrast with the rest of the piece.

This object was used to heat lime, a necessary ingredient in the preparation of betel, which the Vietnamese population used to chew since ancient times. The opening visible on the top of the body allowed the lime to be taken out with a spatula. The handle is similar to a betel vine, thus linking the object to its function.

The lime pot symbolised the home and occupied a central place in the social life of the household. According to tradition, if the lime pot was broken, it would bring bad luck. This fundamental object in Vietnamese culture was placed on the altar of the family, the village or the pagoda.

This object is part of the production of stoneware in Vietnam, which often has a cracked appearance due to the lightness of its covering. The fineness of these Vietnamese stoneware wares ensured their success with foreign customers at the time.

This piece comes from a Belgian family collection, started in the 1940’s and increased with various pieces found over time even in Europe.