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Maker(s):Unknown
Culture:Chinese (19th century)
Title:Powdered Incense Clock
Date Made:19th century
Type:Timekeeping
Materials:paktong with copper trim
Measurements:Overall: 2 9/16 in x 4 7/16 in; 6.5 cm x 11.3 cm
Accession Number:  AC 2009.21.a-h
Credit Line:Gift of Lawrence M. Mead
Museum Collection:  Mead Art Museum at Amherst College
2009-21-a.jpg

Label Text:
Specialized censers marked the passing hours by burning through different types of incense punctuated by small pieces of fragrant woods or resins. A maze-like trail of incense powders was carefully laid in damp ash in a receptacle pan using tiny implements and a stencil pattern plate. Depending on the trail's length, the incense might burn for as little as twelve hours or as long as a month. Different times of day would feature different aromas as the trail burned, with each scent selected to match the mood of the moment. These "incense clocks" were used in religious settings but were also favored by scholars and cherished as gifts.

PR, 2013

Tags:
calligraphy; flowers; decoration and ornament; patterns

Link to share this object record:
https://museums.fivecolleges.edu/detail.php?t=objects&type=ext&id_number=AC+2009.21.a-h

Research on objects in the collections, including provenance, is ongoing and may be incomplete. If you have additional information or would like to learn more about a particular object, please email fc-museums-web@fivecolleges.edu.

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