Echizen – History

Echizen, one of Japan’s Six Old Kilns originates in late Heian period (794-1192). People had already manufactured Sue ware since Nara period (710-794). In accordance with growth of agriculture, people needed more pottery, and then they built the very first kiln in Echizen town.

Thanks to the production of rich and fine clay, Echizen developed into a big pottery locality. In late Muromachi period (1338-1573), they built huge kilns of 30 meters high and 5 meters wide intensively on a hill, and then Echizen became the largest pottery town in Hokuriku area. Jars, wide-mouthed jars and grinding bowls manufactured in Echizen were shipped to the Japan Sea side, and used for a long time.

Echizen had once gone into a decline since middle of Edo period (1603-1867). Although, after Meiji period (1868-1912), people have tried to reincarnate Echizen ware, and as a result, they built Echizen Pottery Village, which enabled Echizen ware to be designated as a Traditional Craft Industry in 1986.

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