Introduction to Ceramic Identification

Resource verified by SHCG editorial group

Host: Florida Museum of Natural History


A website illustrating the basic principles of identifying ceramics. 

Most types of historic ceramics (post-1492 ceramics of European origin or inspiration) are classified according to three primary attributes:

•  Paste  : the characteristics of the clay from which the vessel is made
•  Surface Treatment  : the way the surface of the vessel is treated, covered or glazed
•  Decoration  : the methods, colors and motifs used to decorate the vessel  visual ceramic type identification, which will allow users to access additional information.

The website gives brief explanation of how to identify these, under "Intro to Ceramics", and also a database of images showing examples of all types of ceramics and detailing their attributes under "List of Types" and "Glossary".


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