Buying antique teapots
Antique Yixing teapots are different from modern teapots in many respects. The clay of antique teapots is exceptional, and each teapot is unique, showing more clearly the traces of the construction process. However, if you have only experienced modern Yixings so far, you might have expectations about antique Yixings that will not be met. If you are not very familiar with buying antique Yixing, please read carefully the points below before purchasing.
- The workmanship of antique teapots might not be as precise as the workmanship of modern teapots. The spout or the handle might not be perfectly straight, and there might be toolmarks on the exterior of the teapot as well as on the interior. This is part of the “flavor of the period”. If you have questions about a teapot, please reach out before purchasing: we are not able to refund a teapot purchase because the workmanship is not as precise as that of a modern teapot.
- Antique teapots have been in the world for a long time, so they might have some minor damage. We do not offer teapots that have severe damage (i.e. a missing handle, a hairline crack in the body). However, the teapots might have small dents or chips, or small firing defects that do not compromise the teapot’s integrity. Please look at the pictures carefully, and ask us questions if you have any. We will not be able to refund you for a small chip or dent or for similar minor issues.
- Antique teapots were fired only once (modern teapots are usually fired twice). This means that the lid fit of antique teapots is usually not as precise as the lid fit of modern teapots. It is easy to adjust to this feature with the following brewing techniques:
– do not fill the teapot to the very rim, leave 1-2 mm of air
– before you pour out, use your thumb to gently press on the rear side of the lid knob, causing the front part of the lid skirt to press against the pot’s mouth
– begin the pour gently, tilting the teapot at a smaller angle, and increase the tilt gradually as the pour progresses. If you tilt the teapot at 90 degrees from the beginning, it is likely that the leaves will clog the spout.
- We have years of experience collecting Yixing teapots, and have built a collection that includes pieces from the Ming dynasty, Qing dynasty, and Republic of China. We are confident in our ability to authenticate antique Yixing teapots, and we do not offer teapots for which we have doubts. In the absence of conclusive proof, we will not be able to refund a teapot because you know someone who says they think the teapot is not an antique.
By purchasing an antique teapot from us, you agree that you have read and accepted the conditions above.