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About an hour’s drive north of Mandalay, Kyaukmyaung is a small river port renowned for its ceramics, especially the huge, kiln­fired pots which were used to transport oil, fish paste, and other foodstuffs for export. Known as Martaban jars, these distinctive containers are characterized by their glossy brown glaze and sweeping floral designs. Hundreds of  newly turned speci- mens lie drying on the  riverbank and outside the potteries in the Ngwe Nyein area, where visitors are welcome to watch the manufacturing process. It is thought that these giant receptacles were first made here in the 18th century, after King Alaungpaya brought families of potters back from his conquest of Bago (Pegu).

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